Pathway to 5G

5G, the next-generation of mobile networks, holds significant promise for the future of communications. Heralded by some as being “as transformative as electricity,” there is also tremendous hype, as well as no shortage of coverage in the news and on the web. The purpose of this page is to provide a repository of curated content that is highly relevant to CIOs and other IT professionals desiring to understand how 5G fits into their network architecture roadmaps.


5G Timeline

5G developments are moving quickly, and while full 5G deployments will take some time, initial launches are poised to begin soon. 5G networks will be working alongside existing 3G and 4G technology and over time will offer astounding benefits. The timeline below portrays the development of 5G over the next few years.

Customers don’t have to wait for 5G in order to get many of the benefits. Advanced LTE services, such as Gigabit LTE, are available now, so customers can continue to use services like 4G and LTE and plug in 5G where it is applicable. This is all necessary as 5G continues to roll out.

Cradlepoint 5G timeline diagram



5G is the fast-approaching fifth-generation wireless broadband technology. It will be 10 to 100 times faster than the current LTE network and will allow for the connection density to support billions of devices. Gartner predicts that we should expect to see 20 billion Internet-connected things by 2020.

5G will enable diverse use cases from enhanced mobile broadband, to mission-critical control, to massive IoT applications that aren’t possible with 4G systems alone. It is expected to be scalable and energy efficient enough to power the steady growth of new connections and advanced technologies.

5 Things You Can Do Today to Prepare for 5G

5G is starting with fixed wireless access trials in densely populated areas such as Texas, California, and New York. It will rely heavily on concurrent connections to 4G LTE to ensure continuous coverage when outside 5G areas. 5G won’t replace LTE, it will continue to evolve along with LTE — and the two will work in a complementary fashion to handle different types of traffic most efficiently. Today, LTE is the fastest way to connect to the network. Here’s what enterprises can do to prepare for 5G.

1. Understand the technology – at a high level.

It’s important to know the basics of what 5G will provide, how it works, and when and where it will be available — but don’t get mired in the details. Investing just an hour in a webinar will give you a good overview. Visit to gather valuable information on 5G and the transformation of the WAN.


2. Take a look at your refresh cycle.

Consider how both 4G, as well as 5G, can play a role in increasing network reliability and security while lowering your operating expenses.


3. Evaluate the impact of 5G on your security architecture.

The vastly improved latency benefits of 5G will introduce many new application and use case possibilities, but those benefits can be negated by outdated security models.


4. Talk to your peers in other departments.

These new use cases can benefit teams in Operations, HR, Marketing, Sales, etc. Help those department heads understand the possibilities where 5G can help increase revenues, reduce costs, and/or create a competitive advantage.


5. Get advice from the experts.

Once you have a sense for how 5G might benefit your company, invest a half day with your key leadership and our 5G experts. For qualified clients, Cradlepoint will conduct an interactive workshop to better understand how 5G can apply specifically to your organization, dialog and test your use case ideas, as well as advise the best path forward on integrating 5G into your technology roadmap.


The Pathway to 5G Workshop

The Pathway to 5G Workshop

The Pathway to 5G Workshop

Cradlepoint is offering a personalized half-day, in-person consulting workshop that is designed to help CIOs and senior IT leaders take advantage of emerging gigabit LTE and 5G services within their next-generation WAN strategies. This workshop will educate leaders on the underlying wireless spectrum and technologies that provide the foundation for these new services, as well as the published rolled-out plans for major carriers—including upcoming 5G market launches.

Request Workshop



Additional Resources