In recent years, the adoption of digital transformation within educational institutions has rapidly increased, primarily out of necessity. Due to the global pandemic, learning institutions were forced to adapt to remote teaching and learning, as 100% virtual instruction was implemented during government lockdowns.
While the industry has been on a steady path towards digitalization for two decades, a combination of factors is leading to faster adoption rates and more investment in high-speed broadband access, as well as security, as even the most prestigious colleges and universities have been victims of cyberattacks and data exfiltration.
The world of education is broad and deep, including research projects where multiple universities and other organizations are collaborating and where the data being shared is as valuable as corporate secrets.
All these factors have focused the light on the potential of 5G for connecting educational institutions, connecting teachers and students, and for bringing game-changing learning technologies into the real world, including XR (virtual reality, extended reality, mixed reality, and more).
The integration of 5G networks into education delivery has the potential to revolutionize connectivity and forever change where, how, and when we teach, learn and engage, simplifying logistics while improving the quality of the entire learning experience.
5G is poised to help teachers across all educational levels deliver more exciting, entertaining, and effective learning experiences, and the good news is, Enterprise 5G (which brings an enterprise-grade quality of service and security – without the wires) is being designed and delivered with software and cloud methodologies.
5G is the fifth iteration of cellular network operations and is much more powerful and flexible than 4G, the most prevalent wireless technology.
Why? 5G is significantly faster, with an extremely low latency rate.
When compared to a 4G cell tower, a 5G cell tower can hold and support about ten times as many devices.
We caught up with Roy Timor-Rousso, Chief Revenue Officer at JpU, a 5G Enterprise technology and services company working today with a number of school districts and universities in the United States and elsewhere.
“In the U.S., the opportunity to take advantage of the opening up of CBRS spectrum makes 5G even more attractive to educational institutions of any size,” Timor-Rousso said. “We have worked on solutions that are localized to the physical campus at a major university in the U.S., improving accessibility to wireless connectivity while dramatically improving security and simplifying the provisioning and management of connected devices.”
5G can also improve the quality of video conferencing and strengthen immersive learning experiences using virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), and supports the adoption of personalized learning applications.
“We are teaching the next generation of leaders,” Timor-Rousso said, “so why not do so using the most advanced technologies? With private Enterprise 5G networks controlled by the IT teams or their managed service providers, every application works better. For example, take Zoom, which has been heavily relied upon over the last few years, but with downsides, including lagging and breaks in connectivity, which negatively impact the experience. With 5G, any video collaboration service will be much more reliable, with high-quality audio and video definition, along with embedded security policies.”
Timor-Rousso also noted that with this vastly improved quality, combined with the desire for more connected and personalized learning experiences that are also efficient for teachers and staff, “With 5G, we can also support the acceleration of immersive learning. By integrating XR into immersive classrooms, both physical and virtual, 5G provides greater network capacity and seamless experience that allows learners to explore complex concepts, making interactions richer.”
Timor-Rousso is most passionate about the potential 5G has to speed up democratizing access to quality education in inclusive and affordable ways, leveling the playing field, especially for under-resourced communities.
“We are also leveling the playing field when it comes to the competition,” Timor-Rousso said. “With software telco innovation, JpU has made it possible to spin up 5G Networks that IT teams can more easily manage than all the existing, fragmented network types including supporting WiFi networks which are prone to security flaws, downtime, and overall frustration when educators, staff, and students cannot go online or need to move around to catch a WiFi signal.”
5G is more advanced than 4G, recording extremely high Internet speeds. Educators can now enjoy collaborative learning with students, regardless of location. High-quality images, fast downloads, and virtual reality learning is now the new normal.
This article was originally published on Transforming Network Infrastructure.