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5G Devices Are Evolving Beyond Smartphones to Battery-less IoT

New briefing paper from 5G Americas details the dynamic trajectory of 5G devices, from ubiquitous smartphones to pioneering Reduced Capability and battery-less Ambient IoT devices, highlighting the versatile future of 5G technology.

BELLEVUE, Wash. – Oct 26, 2023:  The landscape of 5G devices is evolving rapidly to meet the diverse needs of various use cases, ranging from smartphones to specialized IoT devices and emerging battery-less ambient IoT devices. Today, 5G Americas, the voice of 5G and beyond in the Americas, has introduced a briefing paper titled ‘Evolving Devices for 5G Adoption’ which examines the evolution of 5G devices, shedding light on optimization and adaptation of 5G technologies that cater to a wide array of use cases.

Chris Pearson, President of 5G Americas, shared his perspective: “The evolution of 5G devices signifies a dynamic shift in connectivity, transforming industries and empowering individuals. From the power of smartphones to the promise of Ambient IoT, this 5G Americas’ briefing paper unveils the future diversity of 5G devices.”  

Key topics covered in this latest 5G Americas briefing paper include:

  • Device Characteristics: As 5G reshapes global communications, device features remain crucial. Characteristics like mobility, bandwidth, size, accessibility, cost, security, coverage, battery life and radio access technology influence the design and functionality of 5G devices for various applications.
  • Device Landscape: Beyond smartphones, the device ecosystem is rapidly growing to include AR glasses, voice-enabled devices and specialized IoT technologies. These developments are transforming industries, improving communication and enabling remote healthcare monitoring.
  • Reduced Capability Devices: Initially, 5G New Radio technology focused on enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB) applications. 3GPP later introduced Reduced Capability (RedCap) specifications in Release 17 to cater to low-throughput, cost-effective and energy-efficient use cases. These devices offer a balanced solution for data rate, latency and battery life.
  • Ambient IoT: Ambient IoT devices operate solely on energy harvested from their environment, eliminating the need for batteries. Characterized by their small form, low cost, and ultra-low power consumption, they find uses in various sectors, such as inventory management and environmental sensing.

According to Brian Daly, Assistant VP at AT&T and co-leader of the briefing paper stated, “This paper encompassed a wide variety of current and future 5G devices, ranging from smartphones to the innovative RedCap and battery-less ambient IoT devices. We categorized these devices based on various factors, emphasizing optimization for IoT applications in terms of complexity, performance, and efficiency.” He further added, “Overall, the evolving landscape of 5G devices presents exciting opportunities across IoT, XR, and beyond.”

Yuchul Kim, Principal Engineer, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., and working group co-leader of this 5G Americas project stated, “This 5G Americas paper provides a holistic view of how 5G devices are evolving to address the diverse needs of today’s interconnected world and serves as a testament to the continuing innovation driving toward new services offered by the 5G industry.”


About 5G Americas: The Voice of 5G and LTE for the Americas

5G Americas is an industry trade organization composed of leading telecommunications service providers and manufacturers. The organization’s mission is to facilitate and advocate for the advancement of 5G and beyond throughout the Americas. 5G Americas is invested in developing a connected wireless community while leading 5G development for all the Americas. 5G Americas is headquartered in Bellevue, Washington. More information is available at 5G Americas’ websiteLinkedIn, and X (formerly Twitter).

5G Americas’ Board of Governors Members include Airspan Networks Inc., Antel, AT&T, Ciena, Cisco, Crown Castle, Ericsson, Liberty Latin America, Mavenir, Nokia, Qualcomm Incorporated, Rogers Communications, Samsung, T-Mobile US, Inc., Telefónica, VMware, and WOM.


5G Americas
Viet Nguyen
+1 206 218 6393

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