How edge APIs and 5G can unlock Next-Gen CX
27 April 2021 • 3 min read
Super-fast connection speeds. Low latency. Widespread connectivity. The next generation of wireless technology - 5G - promises many things. But to fully realise these benefits, you need to push your processing power where it’s needed – to the edge.
Edge computing is computing that’s done near the source of the data. This phenomenon is growing fast with 90% of businesses predicted to use this technology by 2022.
APIs are also on the rise, seamlessly linking organisations and users - as long as you have a solid API strategy. By leveraging these technologies in the right way, combining Edge APIs and 5G, you can introduce many new experiences for your customers.
More than mobile
4G is good but it isn’t great. 43% of consumers complain about poor connectivity where their mobile devices “cuts in and out sometimes/ is not always strong”.
5G rewrites consumer expectations. It’s much faster than previous wireless technologies. It’s more reliable and cheaper. Plus, it offers greater capacity, allowing “thousands of devices in a small area to be connected at the same time”, according to Ofcom.
This is great news for tech-savvy businesses. 5G can provide an enhanced mobile broadband experience for all – but it could do so much more.
5G at the edge
5G goes beyond connecting phones and computers to the World Wide Web. Now, you can push your computing power to the edge.
You can break 5G into three service categories:
Enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB) – delivering supercharged connectivity for your mobile-based apps.
Ultra-reliable low-latency communications (uRLLC) – drastically improving the speed of communication between connected devices.
Massive machine-type communications (mMTC) – allowing for one million smart devices and sensors per square kilometre to connect to the same network, without overloading that network.
By moving your APIs and services to the edge, you can connect your applications using more efficient modes of communication, including IoT protocols. This boosts your customer experiences, making them faster and more immersive than ever before. This also goes beyond the capabilities of today’s Cloud, providing a more distributed and powerful network.
Edge APIs and 5G and you
Here are a few ways to leverage Edge APIs and 5G to introduce new customer experiences to your market:
AI-powered video analytics Video support can help you interact with your customers. But you can supercharge this experience using AI-powered video analytics, capturing, analysing and extracting insights to improve the customer experience further. You could, for example, analyse how a customer uses your product or service during a video call, or analyse their reaction using facial expression analysis. Mobile and home device-powered AI is already a thing. The Amazon Fire TV Cube, for example, has in-the-box voice recognition.
Super-smart support Smart devices are already here but, with 5G, you can achieve a theoretical data rate of 20 Gbps - that’s 100 times faster than 4G. So, we can connect more smart devices per square km. One consequence of this is unlocking enhanced customer analytics – providing you with insights into how your products are actually used in the real world.
Unlock extended reality Virtual (VR), augmented (AR) and mixed reality (MR) technologies – collectively known as extended reality (XR) - step up a great deal with 5G. This could transform how customers interact with your brand. More than half (51%) of consumers are willing to use XR tech to assess a product, for example, but the latency experienced on 4G networks can make XR users feel sick.
Enable smarter decision making Edge APIs and 5G can help you understand your customers better than ever before. You can personalise your products or run targeted marketing campaigns, for example. Or you could use computer vision and edge analytics to push relevant product content to customers when they’re in your store through a mobile application. Virtual assistants could even remotely serve these stores. The possibilities are endless.
To learn more about the potential of 5G and Edge APIs for your business, or to discuss how AND can help you source the technical talent to unlock the power of 5G, contact us here.