One-Second Movie Downloads on 5G Network

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When the next super-fast mobile network launches in 2020 you will be able to download a high-definition movie in one second flat.

But the future fifth generation, or 5G, network is not really being designed for you.

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In fact, it will be built for your car, fridge, smartwatch, toothbrush, lightbulb and a host of other everyday objects to communicate with each other online, a phenomenon known as the Internet of things.

Handling the new traffic is a key challenge for network operators gathering at the four-day Mobile World Congress opening Monday in Barcelona, Spain.

Worldwide data traffic generated by people's mobile devices will multiply 11-fold by 2018, according to US telecommunications equipment manufacturer Cisco.

But the traffic generated between connected objects, so-called machine-to-machine (M2M) communication, will already be greater than all the world's mobile telephones combined by 2015, it said in a study.

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Mobile networks will need to boost capacity by 1,000 times by 2020 to cope with the huge growth in M2M traffic if lag time is to be avoided, said Ulrich Dropmann, senior executive at Finnish mobile services group Nokia Solutions Network (NSN).

Many objects will only send a trickle of data but the combined data flow will be "considerable" said Dropmann.

The 5G networks will launch in 2020, with a broader rollout from 2025, said Frederic Pujol, head of mobile broadband at consultancy group IDATE.

The prospect of 5G networks may seem distant in countries where 4G has yet to be deployed, but in countries at the cutting edge of technology such as South Korea, operators are already installing an advanced version of 4G to handle the demand.