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 How 5G Is Influencing The Future Of Gaming Technology

5G is the 5th generation telecommunications technology standard for broadband cellular networks, initially introduced in 2016 with the first generation.

5G is the successor to the 4G networks which provide optimal connectivity to most current cellphones today. 

For years, the gaming industry has followed a pattern in which evolution has focused on how quickly console manufacturers and computer companies can launch new hardware. But that cycle is about to be interrupted by 5G.

In the gaming industry, 5G can do more than allow players to download huge files in minutes and make lag a thing of the past. This next-generation cellular network could lead to a dynamic change in the way and where video games are played, with players being able to choose between playing on traditional consoles or streaming the latest versions on their TV, smartphone, or tablet. Mobile games will also benefit as developers become free from the technical limitations of smartphones.

Bringing Game Development And Gameplay To The Cloud

In October 2018, Electronic Arts launched "Project Atlas," streaming service and development platform for cloud-based video games. In a long blog post, CTO Ken Moss explained the company's vision, including multiplayer games coupled with thousands of mapped players for thousands of miles, terrain construction algorithms that ease the process of building realistic in-game worlds, and hyper-realistic designs.

Time has shown that Moss's prediction is correct. Stadia, Google's streaming game service, was launched in November 2019, while GeForce, a rival gaming platform by  NVIDIA, went live as well. A launch date has not yet been announced for xCloud, but Microsoft has openly tested its streaming service since October 2019. EA has not provided an update on Project Atlas’ progress after announcing a two-week public beta in the fall of 2019.

Apparently, there doesn't seem to be a need for EA to rush Project Atlas. In any case, a prolonged development timeline should benefit the company, pending the time for 5G networks to circulate the world. In its practical test of Project Atlas, PCMag noted that games are not yet running at full power due to the amount of data needed to stream 4K videos. Once the transition to 5G is complete, gamers should have more than enough bandwidth and speed to stream high-quality console games.

The World’s First 5G Console

Currently, 5G doesn't exactly make sense for Microsoft or Sony. Their consoles are built to be played at home, giving players the option to connect them directly to their wireless routers for more speed. Then there's an antenna issue: Lenovo has embedded nine antennas into its new 5G laptop to make sure users have the strongest signal possible.

Although 5G compatible consoles may not make sense for Microsoft and Sony, it is a different scenario for Nintendo. Nintendo Switch is built to be played instantaneously and could benefit from allowing gamers to utilize 5G networks. 


The cost will be an important factor in the influence that 5G has on games. If the costs are expensive, it might make more sense for players to invest in a new game PC or console instead of getting a 5G compatible device, game streaming service, and unlimited data packet.

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