5G networks offer unique capabilities designed for forward compatibility– supporting future services yet to be discovered. It enhances mobile broadband to provide new immersive experiences like VR and AR using faster, more uniform data rates, lower latency, and lower cost-per-bit. It delivers essential communications for industries by enabling new services with reliable links like remote control of infrastructure and vehicles. And it has a massive IoT (internet of things) that seamlessly connects the embedded sensors of these objects to other devices and systems to exchange data.
5G is up to 100x faster than 4G, working at 10 gigabits per second, allowing the network to deliver a high level of performance for an increasingly connected society. Imagine being able to download an HD movie in just 6 seconds as opposed to 7 minutes. That’s just an example because we know you don’t watch movies on the jobsite…right?
Ok, we’ll just get to how 5G is beneficial for your company rather than be a sales associate for a mobile tech giant.
How 5G is Affecting Construction Technology
The construction industry has been rapidly evolving into a digital landscape. We see this with countless applications, cloud-based software, and more advanced machinery. Around 92% of workers use a smartphone every day to get work done. It’s because mobile technology allows for real-time data collection and transmission between the jobsite and project managers in the office. And with cloud-based software, features include handling RFIs, change orders, daily reports, time cards, and other pertinent information.
With the advancement of technology, construction companies have access to remote operations, equipment tracking, remote usage monitoring, augmented reality (AR), and an industry favorite, building information modeling (BIM). While these tools work great in the field, it can be hard to receive, send, and create valuable information for projects on a 4G network. There’s a need for higher bandwidth, especially when there’s a constant technology change—enter: 5G.
IoT is already used in the industry through sensors that alert workers when they enter unsafe site areas, drones to monitor progress, CCTV cameras, RFID tags, and much more. Stakeholders require constant communication between a jobsite and other office sites. In construction, project delivery depends on efficient data collection, capture, and analysis/evaluation, all of which require reliable connectivity. 5G has you covered because it provides high-speed data with real-time processing and increased connectivity with strained devices.
So what does this all mean for your company?
Possible 5G Uses for Projects
Here are some ways that construction companies can use 5G to help drive efficiency within a project and ensure a seamless workflow.
Real-time automation: This is the most popular segment of construction applications. The most common example of automation is autonomous machines such as this San Francisco based company, BuiltRobotics. These self-driving machines can transport materials across the jobsite and haul heavy items without posing a risk to workers. Teams can rely on 5G to understand activities on jobsites in real-time and perform remote or autonomous construction operations.
Enhanced Video: 5G will help organize and collect video information data from inexpensive technology. The network enables real-time video sharing and data so information can be exchanged through the cloud, reducing the need for team members to visit a jobsite. Real-time, visual information also reassures the owner and stakeholders because of the on-demand transparent view of the project at any particular moment in time.
Monitoring and Tracking: IoT is gaining prominence at construction sites with data collected from a vast array of sensors, including structural health, location, weather, GPS, and IP cameras. LumiCon by aoms provides sensor and software platforms to help with visibility on the jobsite. With 5G, this information will become indispensable as companies use other technologies, such as artificial intelligence, onto real-time data outputs and revolutionize how to work safely and efficiently.
Holographic Building Visualization: BIM is widely known and a popular application used in the construction industry. But imagine using BIM with virtual reality and holographic. This is a possibility with 5G. Using smart glasses like Microsoft Hololens will allow stakeholders to render a virtual model of the building or elements of the construction process in a project using holographic schematics.
Fostering Collaboration: Construction projects can be complex with immense detail. Sharing knowledge with everyone on board is crucial to the project workflow. We are often trying to solve the same problems with the same set of resources (design, vendors, and trade partners). 5G makes this process much more manageable.
When it comes to 5G, the network’s capabilities open up a seemingly infinite number of possibilities. Data collected can be understood and acted on in real-time. High bandwidth and low-latency times ensure more data than ever can be quickly and easily managed and analyzed, overlaying increased intelligence into every device. The integration of 5G and IoT can help construction companies improve productivity and safety, creating a seamless, efficient project workflow.