In 2011, the first studies began to develop what is now 5G. It is expected that starting this year, this technology will begin to be implemented around the world. It is estimated that throughout 2021, more than 500 million smartphones that use 5G will be manufactured and distributed. 5G in the retail sector may be the big boost we’ve been waiting for.


Applications of 5G technology in the retail sector and other areas

5G is measured in milliseconds, that is, one-thousandth of a second. At this speed, the latency is extremely low. This refers to the time elapsed between sending and receiving the information.

For example, this increase in speed will allow remote operations, where there will be practically no latency between doctors operating remotely. In the same way, autonomous cars would considerably reduce braking time.

In addition, 5G is expected to allow a new generation of wireless robots to emerge, as well as greater automation of factories and warehouses. About entertainment, 5G will take gaming to the next level, where the speed will be incredible and the number of attendees will not be a problem. Cloud storage is expected to evolve as well, both in capacity and speed and potential new benefits. 5G will navigate at 10Gbps and be a hundred times faster than 4G to navigate at 100Mbps. In addition, it will have more capacity for mobiles to connect to a single network. For example, 5G could support the large amount of data that a smart city would generate.

The 5G revolution in the retail sector

Today many techniques are already used but not regularly. For example, the internet of things (IoT), virtual reality (VR), or artificial intelligence (AI).

How could 5G in the retail sector promote these technologies?

The internet of things (IoT), virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR)

Today, with 4G, both realities are limited by speed and latency. However, experts from the Deloitte consultancy warn that 5G will be a revolution.


In recent years, distance education systems have become popular. In large part, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. VR and AR will attract students’ attention and encourage interaction between them.

Can you imagine understanding what the Berlin Wall was like, virtually teleporting you there? This will be possible with VR. The use of 3D, audio, videos, and sound generates much richer content that will display the students’ five senses.

Remote surgery

In addition to assisting remotely as has been done several times in China and the US, medical robots connected to the cloud could learn from other robots and perform tasks that were not programmed for them. The fact of operating with robots reduces the possibility of infections in the operating room itself. It would also reduce waiting times since surgeons could operate in remote areas without having to travel.

In the field of psychology, VR can create immersive environments where the patient can practically truly experience the experiences or phobias to be treated.


Artificial intelligence (AI)

Mobile manufacturers such as Apple or Huawei are working on their devices to provide applications that use AI. Part of this AI will be executed by the same device and the rest, by the cloud. In the last few years, we have all experienced the use of video calls on our mobiles. All these thanks to 4G. If 5G will be much faster, we can be sure that communications will acquire a higher level of interaction and fluidity.

Smart houses and buildings will surely increase due to the high degree of interconnectivity.

On the other hand, AI allows data to be analyzed to determine behaviors, trends, better decision-making, and cybersecurity.

The revolution of the Retail sector

Today, in the retail world systems such as Wi-Fi, RFID, NFC, etc. are used. That allows a much more enriching shopping experience. The speed of 5G allows much faster connectivity and can both host and disclose an amount of data that today is not possible.


Thanks to the use of the IoT connected to the 5G it will be possible to have a large amount of data such as temperature, location, additional information, etc. that will allow the supply chain to house information in a constant and easily accessible way.


There is already talk of the 4th industrial revolution thanks to its digital transformation. Process optimization is one of the great advantages. The work will be more efficient and the time required to carry out a process will be reduced. In addition, the production volume can be adapted to the needs of each client. For this to be possible, you will need:

  1. CYBER PHYSICAL SYSTEMS. They are those devices with high processing and communication capacity.
  2. 3D PRINTERS. Small quantity customization without increasing cost.
  3. AI. It allows processing a large volume of information collected from Big Data. Thanks to its algorithms, it will be able to learn autonomously.
  4. BIG DATA. It will be necessary to have technology that collects all this information, since its analysis allows to have a peripheral vision of all the analyzed processes.

Thanks to VR and AR the shopping experience could undergo a revolution. The interaction between brand and consumer will be much more intense. For example, an application of these new technologies could give a virtual tour to the consumer through their smartphone. Applications that allow VR to test articles virtually will also become widespread.


5G in the retail sector can record a large amount of data through different devices and sensors. You can also integrate social networks as well as loyalty programs and all this in real-time. This is how retailers may, for example, send offers or make recommendations with the RA, or personalized digital displays based on the tastes of each client, etc.

Another very interesting feature will be the real-time stock accounting and sales forecast that could inform you of the need to replenish or order more stock before you run out of units of that item.

5G will bring us endless new opportunities and practical applications. Throughout 2021, the first cellphones with the capacity to sustain the network are expected to be launched, and the 5G network itself, which should be launched very soon at a general level.

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