The 5G networks will contribute to making the health and education systems more efficient and economical, thanks to the resources and applications provided through telemedicine and tele-teaching, as revealed, among other issues, in the II National Forum 5G, broadcast in streaming last Thursday. The experts warned, in any case, that the benefits of 5G will not be immediate, from the outset because there is much to be done in terms of network deployment and application development, and also because a lot of talent will be required for the applications to be truly effective .
Spanish society has been able to adopt, in recent years, information and communication technologies very immediately. Spain was preparing so that there would be connectivity for all, because it was a very important task, but now it is also urgent. Users who had a good connection have been able, during the pandemic, to maintain a good part of their lives, but those who do not have an Internet connection, because the infrastructure does not reach them or due to lack of economic means, have been left helpless, he said. Roberto Sánchez, Secretary General of Telecommunications, last Thursday during the II National 5G Forum.
“We need to speed up the process so that everyone has connectivity, and this affects 5G,” he added. While 4G was a revolutionary system in our personal lives, 5G will be equally revolutionary in our professional communications and will also allow us to offer multiple services to society in general, said the Secretary General for Telecommunications. “That is why we are developing a strategy to promote 5G, with the upcoming creation of an advisory council for digital transformation, of which the public and private sectors and operators will be part, to reel off the possibilities that 5G offers,” he said.
5G will have a great economic and social impact in the coming years and “we are playing a lot”, because 2.3 million 5G-related jobs are expected to be created in the EU in five years, said Carlos Grau
The Mobile World Capital will act as an accelerator of the 5G ecosystem, “because it allows the orchestration of pilot projects in a very agile way and their involvement in use cases,” said Carlos Grau, CEO of this body, of which the GSMA is part of its board of trustees, the different Spanish Administrations and the operators present in Spain. “We make a great effort to make 5G the laboratory of Europe.” Grau added that “we play a lot”, because 5G will have a great economic and social impact in the coming years. Around 2.3 million 5G-related jobs are expected to be created in the EU in the next five years, he said.
Connect empty Spain profitably
5G technology offers the opportunity to promote digital transformation and to contribute to making teleworking and tele-teaching more agile and to connecting what is called empty Spain, due to the lack of adequate infrastructure due to the shortage of population. “5G technology has greater flexibility, consumes less energy and will facilitate cost-effective connection in the last section, because the installation costs will be much lower, thanks to the use of cheaper components and the support of the extensive fiber optic network that is it has in Spain ”, argued Carlos Grau.
The key to success, said the CEO of Mobile World Capital, “is to identify the use cases that have the greatest impact”, both in society in general and in industry and professionals. “Hence the importance of the National 5G Observatory and the close collaboration with the Secretary of State and Red.es.” The objective, he pointed out, is “to anticipate use cases and identify companies and entrepreneurs that collaborate with operators so that this impact is as high as possible.” In these three years, “we have identified 80 use cases in Spain”, such as, for example, an emotional robot connected to a 5G network to help the elderly. “Combining 5G with artificial intelligence techniques can achieve services that radically change the lives of citizens,” said Carlos Grau.
It would require greater technological training for management positions, because now only 10% have it, to solve the challenges that currently exist with the support of new technologies and 5G, said Idioa Ortíz
“It is essential, added Roberto Sánchez, that we bring digital capabilities to the entire population, because otherwise we will create a part of the population that will be left out of these new digital services.” However, the task that must be carried out to achieve this scenario, which will still take some time to arrive, is not easy. Dan Sjöblom, president of Berec Europe, assured in the 5G Forum that “the challenges that must be addressed range from regulation, new business models and spectrum availability to coverage, quality of service, security and resilience of the networks”. Berec is the body that regulates electronic communications in Europe.
Economic reactivation thanks to 5G
Information and telecommunications technologies can be an opportunity to reactivate the economy of Spain, said Maite Marcos, Director General of Telecommunications and Organization of Audiovisual Communication Services, but pointed out that a lot of talent will be needed and the implementation of new models of business and services. In this sense, we are at a key moment, because the arrival of 5G services represents an opportunity that cannot be missed.
5G networks will serve to transform industrial services, because they will allow an increase in the productivity of Spanish industry. The pandemic, he pointed out, has caused a leap from four to five years in the advancement of the use of information technologies and has provided an incentive to use them, also encouraged by the funds that the European Union will provide.
The definitive deployment of 5G networks will complement the projects that are already underway and outline the pilot projects in real and large-scale scenarios. In any case, Maite Marcos insisted that leadership, talent and knowledge of the business are needed to emerge stronger from the current situation in which we find ourselves.
There are several applications that are being launched that are very impressive, such as augmented reality and the wireless industry, which together with the expected cheaper hardware will allow progress in the development of 5G and the Spanish economy and industry. It will also apply to citizen services, such as telemedicine.
At the moment, many use cases are being experienced with clients, such as boarding the Ave without queues, the accompanied visit to the Alhambra by Boabdil, or the predictive maintenance of many equipment, noted Luis Manuel Díaz de Terán López, director of the telecommunications and services division at Altran Spain. To alleviate connection problems in rural areas without telecommunications infrastructure, Altran is developing an airship that, placed in the stratosphere, can provide broadband services.
For Díaz de Terán, it is essential that the connection reaches everywhere, but it is also essential that the accounts go out. Public action must come, in this case, to help balance the accounts of the private initiative. Both in the agri-food industry and in the logistics industry there are many applications of 5G that can further improve the productivity of these sectors and that are, from an environmental point of view, also very competitive.
Alicia Asín, CEO of Libelium, highlighted the hyper-fragmentation that exists, especially in the development and use of Internet of Things (IoT) devices, a fragmentation at a geographical level, in connectivity and in applications. Even so, she pointed out that the great connectivity that is expected to exist in rural areas is a great opportunity to relaunch all current experiences.
In any case, large tractor projects are needed to link with the current ones and generate great added value, said Alicia Asín. The 33 use cases that are being made in Andalusia on the subject of tourism and thanks to augmented reality are very promising and will allow the client to be hooked. There is a lot of talent in Spain, although it is necessary to create the conditions and the appropriate framework for its flourishing, the speakers at the round table came to say about the role of 5G in economic reactivation during the Move ON5G, the II National 5G Forum.
5G will promote better services to citizens
Spanish society is currently facing numerous challenges and challenges, whether in the field of health, digital governance or education, that 5G networks, with the help of multiple applications available to citizens, can contribute to improve them. In the case of health, information and communication technologies will play a fundamental role, said Adolfo Muñoz Carrero, head of the digital health research unit at the Carlos III Health Institute.
For Adolfo Muñoz, health systems are now highly oriented to solving the problems of acute patients, but there are more and more patients suffering from chronic diseases, which must be periodically controlled, such as hypertension, to avoid relapses. The monitoring of these patients with the new technologies based on 5G, with the monitoring applications and the empowerment of the patients, will contribute to control the problem of the aging of the population and the increase in chronic patients with a more effective follow-up and with fewer resources. economical. In any case, as in other cases previous speakers had pointed out, a lot of research must be done and clear scientific evidence of these new methods that technology makes available to us, he said.
In the case of digital governance, 5G will also play an essential role in the transformation of public administrations. The move from analog to digital government entails great challenges, it was recognized, but in Spain great progress is being made. Our country, said Adolfo Muñoz, is in second place in the ranking of the quality of public administrations, and in 17th place worldwide. Things are being done well, focusing on citizenship, although much remains to be done. In fact, the speakers in the forum repeatedly pointed out, it is a process of continuous improvement. There is no doubt, however, that the new telecommunications networks, services and applications that 5G will allow to launch will be of great help.
José María Siota, executive director at the IESE business school, pointed out, however, that many proofs of concept are lacking in the field of teaching to verify the suitability of some methods used by technologies, although more and more companies are looking for investment opportunities in the education sector, because it is a fundamental issue for the future of societies. He pointed out that technology is a tool and not the focus, although 5G and its development plans that are being implemented will facilitate financial resources to progress in tele-education.
Idoia Ortíz de Artiñano, coordinator of Govtechlab Madrid, emphasized that 5G should help change the way of working, both in its structure and in knowledge. What cannot be done, she clarified, is that it goes at a price. The focus should also be on putting the cases into practice and making them more eco-sustainable. The training of professionals is also, in her opinion, a key issue, because she considers that they do not have enough information to know what they can do.
To help solve the current challenges, more technological training of management positions would be required. According to Idioa Ortíz, in management positions only 10% have technological training, which is a problem for the scenario related to the new networks that are coming. Good practices and solutions that already exist but do not reach Public Administrations should also be seriously rethought. Finally, she pointed out, it is necessary to generate sufficient demand for the new applications. You have to open them and bring them closer to suppliers, she said.