With the number of smartphone and wireless internet users set to increase at a rapid pace over the next few years, there is an increased need for a next generation mobile wireless technology such as 5G. Before discussing 5G, it is important to understand consumer needs today. This paper includes findings from an online survey that was administered to students and alums of SUNY Polytechnic and other universities in the US to understand what drives choice of mobile service providers. Additionally, the challenges faced by consumers with respect to their mobile and wireless use were tested and the improvements they seek was sought. The author then uses secondary research to understand if 5G will address these consumer needs and facilitate other commercial applications. While consumers might be fairly satisfied with their mobile service providers today, there is still room for improvement on some aspects such as network coverage, call quality and data speed. Implementation of 5G through efficient spectrum use and technologies such as Massive MIMO and MmWave will help address the above and also facilitate broader commercial applications in multiple industries such as driverless cars, smart cities etc.
A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Masters of Science in Telecommunications
State University of New York (SUNY) Polytechnic Institute at Utica/Rome.