Q&A: 5G set to transform the life of the consumer

Kevin Cho, UK managing director of global smart device brand OPPO, discusses the huge impact 5G-powered devices will have on the lives of consumers around the world


SPONSORED BY OPPO

How has the 5G journey evolved over the last couple of years?

We have come a long way to where we are now. Over the last year, specifically, we have made some really incredible strides, though there is still a lot more potential to be realised in terms of developing 5G’s business use-cases and ensuring the greatest value for consumers. This year, we see the technology is so finely tuned that we’re beginning to see a significant uptick in the benefits 5G’s faster connectivity can bring to consumers. The coronavirus pandemic has also shifted the 5G conversation forward even more than we had originally anticipated as consumers have become increasingly reliant on their smartphones, demanding faster and better-quality communication and technology.

What are the key benefits 5G will provide for consumers?

In the transitions from 2G to 3G and 3G to 4G, the consistent theme has always been the growing speed of connectivity. However, 5G also brings the added benefits of much lower latency, and higher performance, connection capacity and flexibility. The benefits are really limitless and are growing day by day. Reduced latency means gaming is instantly that much better and that much available on mobile devices. As virtual reality (VR) technology takes off around the world, 5G will be a key pillar facilitating unprecedented gaming experiences for consumers. That’s not to mention the explosion of internet of things devices, from connected homes to smart vehicles and cities, which 5G technology will bolster. Then there’s the speed of connectivity path, which we are incredibly excited about. It’s so much faster with 5G that as soon as consumers get their hands on a 5G device they will immediately feel the difference. Couple this with some of the latest technology, like augmented reality (AR) and telemedicine, and 5G in essence will enable new and more exciting ways to communicate in every facet of our daily lives.

In what ways will 5G transform how consumers use their mobile handsets?

Currently, when it comes to connectivity, consumers tend to use their home or work wifi connection for most of their online activity. This means that while your device might be mobile, your connection isn’t always mobile. 5G will completely change that. It will take smartphones to the next level so consumers really can just use one device for all their gaming, streaming, working and social media, consolidating the entire user experience and meaning they won’t need to invest in as many devices to meet their connectivity needs. The availability of 5G will make your smartphone the hub or the gateway to everything connected in your life. From controlling the air conditioning to defrosting the fridge remotely, consumers will be able to interact, engage and control all their connected devices anywhere and anytime they want, through their smartphone.

The availability of 5G will make your smartphone the hub or the gateway to everything connected in your life

What notable proof-points of 5G will we see in entertainment?

The key entertainment experiences enhanced by 5G are sport and music. Firstly, the increased network capacity on a 5G network will minimise the kind of network congestion that would

typically occur during large sporting events or huge live shows, such as the Champions League Final, keeping consumers connected without the risk of interruptions. You may have found when walking out of a concert that it is difficult to send a text message or make a phone call. The mass connectivity benefits of 5G will eliminate those painpoints. We also recently collaborated with the British songwriter Nao and the Kaleidoscope Orchestra to produce a remix of Nao’s hit song Another Lifetime. They jointly performed the remix during lockdown in a virtual orchestral ensemble that was captured, produced and shared using the 5G-powered OPPO Find X2 Pro. In an increasingly virtual world, 5G enables seamless collaboration in real time. These unique new experiences can be replicated at festivals, theatres and entertainment venues, and I think they will fundamentally change the entertainment industry.

 

How is OPPO looking to lead the way in 5G?

As a company, we’ve always aspired to be a leader in this space and we’re at the forefront of the entire 5G movement. We were the first company to achieve 5G connectivity through a smartphone. In 2019 we launched globally the very first 5G smartphone, and we are spending about $1.5 billion every year to ensure we are on top of our game and continuing to innovate when it comes to 5G. With so much possibility on the horizon, we want to make sure we are always first to the punch when it comes to 5G. We also partner with other leading players to ensure we can deliver 5G in the most effective form. We recently worked with Ericsson and Coventry University to deploy the UK’s first 5G standalone network slicing functions on Vodafone’s network. The new networks were verified using OPPO’s 5G smartphones X2 Pro and Reno3.

How affordable and accessible will 5G be for consumers?

Whenever new technology is introduced to the market there will be some kind of premium to start with, but we are committed to delivering products that meet the needs of consumers at all price points. We appreciate that when it comes to new technology there isn’t one size fits all, so we cater for high-end, mid-tier and entry-level devices. We don’t want a high price tag to prevent any of our loyal consumers from being able to enjoy the great benefits of 5G. Already in the UK and across Europe we have one of the most comprehensive 5G handset portfolios and in just a few weeks UK consumers will be able to experience the entry-level series of 5G phones from OPPO.

OPPO’s role will be to provide the powerful smart devices to make sure that our customers are connected all the time, everywhere

What is the future of 5G and what role will OPPO play?

5G will be the key to enhancing everything we do online, enabling us to bring a lot of the technology of the future forward. From AR to VR, artificial intelligence to immersive online shopping and education on the go, these science-fiction visions will fast become a reality thanks to 5G. For OPPO as a company, our role will be to provide the powerful smart devices to make sure our customers are connected all the time, everywhere, so they can realise the full benefits of all these exciting opportunities and applications that 5G can bring.

For more information please visit oppo.com