wireless | demystified
by José Cruz, Sr. RF Engineer and Wireless Rebel	 @redwirelessus					August 2018  Who has not heard of the terms IoT, 5G, The Internet of Things, Smart this and Smart that? As it was the case before with the fourth generation of cellular wireless communications (4G LTE and WiMAX) - where some players even called their last 3.5G and 3.9G efforts ‘4G’ - IoT and 5G are now used as springboards by service providers, manufacturers and everything in between to literally jump onto people’s minds and tech-savvy millennials in hopes to, not only catch their attention but also to convince them they’re in ‘the know’. And, once again, we must be careful not to fall into the hype and allow these brilliant and exciting new technologies fall prey of individual and self-centered agendas of the past.   In fact, 5G is precisely the opposite of what its predecessors fostered : the constant battle of different cellular technologies, in different regions all tied to different manufacturers all trying to control each tower, building or market. By contrast, 5G is all about converGence and collaboration, plain and simple. It’s about bringing the intelligence of computing as close to the end user as possible; aka to the ‘edge’. Is about sharing in the tested and proven technologies, such as OFDMA (used in LTE and now in WiFi’s new flavor of 802, ax), so that all can benefit: from the end user in the form of great user experience (UX) to the integrators, building owners, service providers and manufacturers in the form of return on investment (ROI). 30+ years of trial and error has proven that centered, proprietary and monopolized models can only last for so long. Distributed, open-sourced and shared platforms, even to most aggressive Wall Street investor is not only a smart approach but also the right approach. If anything, this is what 5G and the Internet of Things should be (if not already is) all about.  Having the amazing opportunity of been part of one of Detroit’s first ever LoRaWAN (a Long Range, Low Power, open-source, Wide Area Networks technology) trials and lab testing at one of America’s biggest car manufacturers gave me an insider’s first look of corporations, manufacturers and technology providers’ first baby steps in getting to terms with this new way of 5G and IoT thinking. Although a complete success, the evident ‘old ways’ of approaching these fast emerging and smarter technologies simply won’t do. ‘Big corporate names’ find themselves now in need of competing with much faster and nimble small ‘startups’ and businesses that are more interested in getting the individual end user result and experience rather than of the big corporate profit numbers’ report. If nothing else, that’s what 5G and IoT will be all about.   The next generation of 5G ‘doers’ are finding amazing new, fast, intelligent, collaborative and cost efficient ways of getting business actually done without the usual complicated wall drawings, repetitive weekly meetings or same big and slow cogs mentality. Instead, a myriad of smaller, faster and more productive cogs are all working together to bring value and betterment to all - so that very soon, instead of IoT and 5G, the newest buzz words will be ‘we’G and The Internet of US.
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The Internet of Things (IoT) and 5G : today’s hottest buzz words.
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