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The upcoming 5G can be beneficial for IoT in various aspects:

  • higher data-rates
  • low latency
  • better utilization of bandwidth
  • potential wireless power transfer/harvest

Introduction of mm-waves (28 GHz and higher) would be a part of 5G standards. However, mm-waves are tricky and usually require line-of-sight in order to operate.

I wonder, about the IoT devices/applications that would (and could) benefit particularly from the introduction of mm-waves (which differentiates this question with an already cited one and another question of mine that focuses solely on the heavy-load part). How the IoT plans (if it does) to overcome the short-range of mm-wave part of the upcoming 5G? Are there concrete IoT projects that target the usage of mm-waves for its operation?

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MIMO and beamforming FTW!!!!!!!

Most carriers aiming on 5G will have very dense antenna networks in order to make the signal available on as many devices as possible.

I think that 5G on IoT will (at least in short term) solely focus on high-bandwith low-range applications while 4G will ensure coverage. In very dense urban areas beamforming (take a look at this) can be used to direct the waves and many antennas can set up a MIMO enviroment where you can get the signal from multiple antennas with LoS and from reflections on surfaces.

As I see things, applications placed away from urban areas will not benefit from 5G at all. On the other side, on urban areas with a good coverage 5G basically solves most IoT problems. As an IoT/embedded systems developer myself, I feel butterflies on my stomach when I think the times of sending only a few bytes a minute will be over for my babies. =)

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