The opportunities created by a great Internet connection

Fast and stable Internet connections change the way people operate at home and at work, and brings with them many great benefits.

This is according to Siatik CEO Brett StClair, who was speaking about digital disruption at the 2018 MyBroadband Fibre Connection at The Venue in Melrose Arch.

StClair said the average home is changing, with Wi-Fi and mobile Internet access becoming a cornerstone of the modern home.

This pervasive Internet access means that people are moving away from traditional entertainment and business platforms.

Traditional broadcasting TV is replaced by streaming services like Netflix and Showmax, messaging has become the preferred communication method, and connected home assistants are growing in popularity.

This is only the start, however, with the next phase of connected devices set to disrupt transportation and the way we communicate.

Self-driving cars, online bots which can help with everyday tasks like homework and scheduling appoints, and advanced AI services are just around the corner.

Generally referred to as the fourth industrial revolution, there are great advances in robotics, artificial intelligence, blockchain, nanotechnology, quantum computing, and biotechnology taking place.

The Internet of Things, 3D printing, and autonomous vehicles are already used in many cities around the world, and to support these advances high-speed mobile and fixed-line networks with low latency are essential.

MTN is one of the companies which is investing billions into its network to make sure South Africa is ready for the fourth industrial revolution.

Over the past three years, it has invested over R30 billion into its network and its network rollout in 2017 was the largest in South Africa’s history.

MTN now has a 3G population coverage figure of 98%, and 4G population coverage of 83%.

To further drive innovation in the network space, MTN partnered with Huawei to conduct the first 5G outdoor trial in Africa.

As part of the 5G trial, MTN reached download speeds of 530Mbps and upload speeds of 79Mbps – along with a latency of 7ms.

5G is one of the cornerstones of the fourth industrial revolution, and MTN is ensuring that South Africa is not left behind in this regard.

MTN hits 1.6Gbps on 5G

In June, MTN held another 5G demonstration – this time at the Gerotek test track where it had a driver wear a virtual reality headset to control a large vehicle drifting around on a skidpan.

The windows of the vehicle were blacked out, making it impossible for the driver to see without the use of the headset – which displayed video streamed directly from external car-mounted cameras.

Video was streamed at a resolution of 4K (3,840 x 2,160) with a latency of below 5ms while the car was in motion.

Due to the low latency and visual fidelity of the VR experience, the driver was able to drift the car around the test track without encountering any problems.

Ericsson and MTN partnered for the demo, which showed the power of 5G connections for low-latency applications.

The company said the trial is the first automotive use case demonstrating 5G mobility in Africa.

Now read: Why MTN launched new fixed-LTE packages

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The opportunities created by a great Internet connection