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How Will 5G Affect Mobile App Industry in 2021?

How Will 5G Affect Mobile App Industry in 2021?

Since the advent of the internet, many technological innovations have entered our lives, one after the other. The latest technological excitement is about 5G.

No doubt, 5G will change our lives considerably. It is believed to be the spark of the fourth industrial revolution. Although 5G can disrupt industries, it has the power to generate a wave of new possibilities.

Specifically, it has the most potential to change mobile app development. So, if you want to explore the capacities of 5G impacting mobile app development in the future, you are at the right place.

What is 5G technology and how it works?

After 1G, 2G, 3G, and 4G, the novel 5G tech is the 5th generation standard for broadband cellular networks. 5G offers a new form of network designed to bring virtually everyone and everything connected, from people and devices to machines and objects.

The new 5G wireless technology makes it possible for users to have new experiences and for new industries to connect. These are the results of higher performance and enhanced efficiency of 5G tech.

5G enables the delivery of higher multi-Gbps peak data speeds, ultra-low latency, as well as having increased reliability, network capacity, and availability. It also brings a more uniform user experience for an increased number of users.

A new generation of the cellular standards was appearing approximately every 10 years, with different frequency bands and faster data transfer rates. Let’s look into the generations of networks preceding 5G:


Appearing in the 1980s as an analog telecommunications standard, 1G or the first generation of mobile networks was capable of delivering analog voice.

It was first launched in Japan in 1979 and then expanded to some other countries gradually, till the mid-1980s. Now, the 1G cellular network is only operating limitedly in Russia.


The second generation, 2G, introduced digital voice in the early 1990s. It was first launched in 1991 in Finland. It was revolutionized from 2G (GPRS) to 2.5G and then 2.75G (EDGE).


The third generation of mobile networks appeared in the 2000s and brought in mobile data. It enabled faster data transfer compared to its predecessors. 3G can support data transfer of at least 144 kbit/s.

 Later 3G technologies, such as 3.5G and 3.75G increased the transfer rate to the Mbit/s range for smartphones and mobile broadband modems in laptops. It made fixed wireless internet access, video call, and mobile TV technologies possible.


4G which is also called 4G LTE was the start of a new era in mobile broadband. 4G appeared in the 2010s. 4G internet connection speed can be up to 300 Mbps, while it was 21 Mbps max for its forerunner, 3G connection.


The fifth generation of mobile networks, 5G, owes its existence to 1G, 2G, 3G, and 4G technologies. 5G aims to provide an unprecedented level of connectivity. Many global operators began launching it in early 2019.

5G has enabled improved coverage, several tens of Mbit/s data transfer, and significant latency reduction compared to 4G.

Which countries are using 5G technology?

As mentioned earlier, many operators started using 5G in 2019, and every day more and more countries are deploying it. Up to now, there are more than 35 countries that deployed 5G in their country. Also, the manufacturers of Android phones are manufacturing phones with 5G technology.

It is predicted that in 2023 5G penetration in the US and Canada will reach over 50%, compared to the other mobile connections.

List of 5G Deployed Countries

AustraliaDenmarkItalyMonacoSan MarinoSwitzerland
AustriaEstoniaJapanNetherlandsSaudi ArabiaTaiwan
BahrainFinlandKazakhstanNew ZealandSeychellesTajikistan
BelgiumGermanyLaosOmanSloveniaTrinidad and Tobago
BrazilGreeceLatviaPhilippinesSingaporeUnited Arab Emirates
BulgariaHong KongLibyaPolandSouth AfricaUnited Kingdom
ChinaIcelandLuxembourgPuerto Rico, U.S.SpainUnited States of America
ColombiaIndonesiaMadagascarQatarSri LankaUruguay
CroatiaIrelandMaldivesRomaniaSurinameVirgin Islands, U.S.
Czech RepublicIsraelMaltaRussiaSwedenVietnam
CanadaHungaryLithuaniaPortugalSouth KoreaGuam

Opportunities for Mobile App Developers After 5G Emergence

The excitement about 5G technology and its effects on how people and things are going to be connected are not just among consumers. Developers and tech-driven companies will also share the impact of this new level of connectivity.

GSMA conducted a study early in 2019 which revealed that 5G will account for 15% of the global mobile industry by the next five years. It is also projected that the number of subscribers to the 5G network will be increased to reach over 2.8 billion by 2025.

This is a sign for mobile app developers to not only consider how people will be connected through 5G but also to embrace the opportunities 5G brings to mobile app development in 2021.

5G enables mobile app developers to explore and develop new platforms and make apps offering faster, more personalized experience for users.

How 5G Changes Mobile App Development in 2021 and Forever

 5G is being considered with a lot of skepticism at the moment. But it has a lot to offer, due to its significant enhancements compared to its predecessors. With the hopes of a more refined UI and UX, there is an enormous opportunity for mobile app developers.

The emergence of 5G will affect app developers in some different aspects:

1. Seamless Connectivity

The lower latency means it will be reduced from 50 milliseconds of 4G LTE latency to 1 millisecond. In

practice, this will reduce delays online gamers face between pressing a key on the console and seeing the effect of it on screen. So, 5G will introduce new opportunities for game developers, many of which are mobile game developers.

2. Greater Video App Development

As a mobile developer, you won’t need to worry about the overall performance of your app, esp. if you want to develop video streaming or video calling apps. With the higher resolution, less latency, faster and smoother performance brought to you by 5G, your video app will see a substantial improvement.

3. Enhanced AR and VR Integration

5G will bring more opportunities for AR and VR technologies and their integration with mobile apps. Due to the enhanced operational speed and minimum latency as well as the eMBB (Enhanced Mobile Broadband) of 5G, these technologies can be seamlessly integrated into mobile apps.The integration of AR and VR-based into mobile apps introduces new opportunities for out-of-the-box user interfaces (UI) for specific users and industries like factories, schools, etc.

4. Easier 3D Technology Application

Immersive technology will see a surge in 2021. 5G eases the way mobile apps and 3D printing are combined to generate 3D models.

This change will specifically influence sectors such as education, construction, and healthcare, among others.

5. Superior IoT Implementation

Less latency positively impacts the development of apps for IoT and wearable devices. As the latency decreases through the 5G connection, the transfer of data between mobile devices and other devices and things will be much smoother.

4. Easier 3D Technology Application

Immersive technology will see a surge in 2021. 5G eases the way mobile apps and 3D printing are combined to generate 3D models.

This change will specifically influence sectors such as education, construction, and healthcare, among others.

5. Superior IoT Implementation

Less latency positively impacts the development of apps for IoT and wearable devices. As the latency decreases through the 5G connection, the transfer of data between mobile devices and other devices and things will be much smoother.

6. Faster File Transfers

Large data file transfers will not be as critical an issue for developers as before. From 2021 on, app developers can concentrate on enhancing the user experience. 5G will boost the functionality and effectiveness of large volume data-transfer processes.

7. Better UX

With the enhanced connectivity, decreased load times and increased visual clarity that is made possible by 5G, better responsiveness and UI designs are expected to rise. Mobile app developers can utilize these features to boost UX.

8. More Cloud-based Apps

App users in 2021 won’t worry about installing apps on devices as before. Clouding facilitation with 5G is beneficial for both users and developers. First, it will free up internal hardware and boost the processing power of devices. Moreover, cloud solutions together with the next-gen connection will fade away the dependence on smartphones’ hardware limitations.

9. Increased Battery Life

5G features extend battery life in several ways, which means longer app usage and interaction by users. Faster, less hardware-dependent apps with low latency connections lead to battery life increase in 5G connected devices.

10. Enhanced Integration

App developers can integrate various technologies into their apps using 5G. More human-machine and machine-machine interactions are expected to occur after 5G emergence. This is expected to happen with 5G-enabled personalized interactions, fast feedback, and cloud-based services.

Challenges for Mobile App Developers After 5G Emergence

During the implementation of 5G, mobile app developers may face some challenges like security and privacy concerns, developing multiple app versions, and 5G-based business modeling.

Security Issues

Higher speed and other benefits of 5G technology lead to its wide adoption and thus more data collection. As data collection increases, more data breaches will possibly occur.

Multiple App Versions

As 5G is getting more subscribers worldwide, it will need 5G compatible devices. Though, 5G compatible devices are expected to be expensive. So, some users will probably be using their 3G or 4G connected mobile phones.

So, as a mobile app developer, you address the needs of all types of your target users and make various versions of your apps for various accessibilities.

Need for 5G-based Business Models

Mobile app strategists and business developers will need to consider the higher capacity of 5G. So that they can bring in new business models that make the most of 5G technology capacities.


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