Telecom is an industry that has progressed by leaps and bounds over the past couple of years. The history of the telecom sector is filled with milestones and it has produced quite a few technological marvels of its time. The telecommunication revolution started with the telegraph, a device that was able to send messages over long distances using distinct sounds. This device became a pioneer of the telecom industry and ushered mankind into a new age of connectivity. Along the way, we saw many other telecommunication mediums that became better and more efficient in terms of the quality of communication while being cost-effective over time as well. So, here we observe that there always has been a strong connection between technological advancements and the telecom business.
It is due to this advancement of technology over time that we got a communication medium like the internet. The internet has proven to be the most magnificent innovation of the telecom industry and rightly so since it is considered the best tool for communication that humanity has ever landed upon. We see that how deeply the internet has integrated into the current world as people now use it for not only communication but for work and entertainment-related purposes. It has been the biggest support of humanity during the COVID pandemic that shook the world, and only because of the internet, people were able to do their jobs and continue education. Another factor behind the rise of the internet was its low cost, which was significantly lesser than other mediums.
Its importance can be witnessed by the sheer fact that the overall internet users increased by 2.3 percent in only a year back in 2020. This was the time when customer service lines were the busiest ever, and people kept dialing the RCN customer service number or phone support of other companies to sign up for internet access right away. Because of the internet, the telecom business has seen a huge boom as there are more than 7,000 internet service providers currently active in the US alone. Such immense saturation is only because of one communication medium and there are countless others that make up the telecom business. Nevertheless, it can be said with utmost certainty that technology and current world scenarios play a big role in shaping the telecom business.
A Brief History of Telecom Business
Communications means were present way before when messages used to be transferred through messengers that carried them on foot or on horsebacks. But the actual birth of telecommunication occurred when electricity was introduced and there was the birth of the telegraph by Samuel Morse in 1844. Morse developed his own way of communication on telegraph through different sounds, something which we know today as the Morse code. The US postal system established the first commercial telegraph line from Washington to Baltimore. So, in a way, technological advancement was responsible for the birth of the telecom industry in the first place. By 1876, Alexander Graham Bell achieved the unthinkable when he was granted the first patent for the telephone – a device that was able to transmit voice through electrical signals over long distances.
Then, by the early 20th century, came radio through which voice transmissions could be broadcasted to multiple channels. By 1957, at the start of the cold war, the Russians sent Sputnik satellites into the lower orbit for military communication, which was the first instance of a satellite being used for communication. 1973 witnessed Martian Cooper, the manager of Motorola Corporation, place the first call over a handheld phone, which was dubbed as the mobile phone. At the same time, television was also garnering a lot of popularity from the masses and by the 1980s, there were regular broadcasts on TV. However, in the early 90s, all this changed when the internet, a technology made for military communication,n was made commercial by companies like Microsoft and Netscape through their web browsers. After that, the telecom industry only grew at a drastic pace, and now, we see all these technologies manifested in their modern forms.
Influence of Technology on the Telecom Business
Technological evolution has always been a major driving force in the telecom business, so much so that this industry came into being due to technology. Ever since its inception, technology has been shaping the telecom industry constantly with new inventions and gadgets. Here we are going to discuss a few of those advancements that are shaping up the telecom business for the future.
Introduction of 5G
Cellular technology has seen constant advancements ever since its early days. There was a time that even calling and texting over mobile phones was considered a pretty big thing. Then, came 3G, which allowed users to use the internet on their mobile phones. The speed wasn’t too extraordinary but it got the job done. The evolution of 3G into 4G was the next big advancement as it allowed users to experience data speed up to 50 Mbps through their cellular connection. Presently, a rough estimate indicates that there are 4.15 billion 4G customers in the world.
However, since the world is becoming increasingly data-hungry, this required something even better than 4G. This call was answered by 5G – a groundbreaking next step in cellular communication that allows users to achieve speeds up to 1 Gig on their cellphone connection. The trials have been completed and this technology is slowly being rolled out in different parts of the world. It can certainly be said that 5G is going to be a technology that is going to revolutionize the telecom business in the future.
The Mobile Phone Industry
This is a field of the telecom industry that has grown at an unprecedented rate. There was a time when mobile phones wouldn’t even fit into pockets and were only able to do basic functions like calling and texting. Technology has been a major influence in dragging this industry to where it stands today. Now, we see that there are foldable touchscreen smartphones, and mobiles have such powerful hardware that can give any high-performing laptop a run for its money. Apart from that, the costs of mobiles have significantly reduced over time as well. No doubt, some phones cost thousands of dollars but some phones cost just a few hundred bucks and perform well. It’s just about the preference as the mobile phone market has grown so diverse that it has something for everyone and is probably one of the major contributors in the telecom business.
Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR)
The telecom sector has already progressed a lot in terms of communication technologies like video conferencing and calling over the internet, which is significantly cheaper and better in regards to quality. This is being further revolutionized with the integration of AR and VR systems in communication. These mediums are going to allow immersive communication so much so that the person is going to feel involved in a particular simulated environment even if he’s only connected through virtual means. We see the implementation of this in the form of holograms and 3D videos through AR and VR equipment. This is going to be the next step in telecommunication after video calling, which we see is quite prevalent today.
The telecom sector has always progressed hand-in-hand with technological evolution, with technology always benefiting this sector in terms of new communication techniques and gadgets. This trend is going to continue even in the future as we see new technologies that are coming in the future that have the potential to turn the tide of the telecom business.