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Four companies, including Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio, Vodafone Idea (Vi) and an Adani Group entity have put in applications to participate in India’s first auction of 5g airwaves starting July 26, 2022. 5G, short for the fifth-generation cellular technology, promises to exponentially raise the speed and data capacity of wireless networks. For data-hungry India, the upcoming 5G auctions will herald another telecom revolution. It goes beyond super-fast downloads and uploads, glitch-free multiplayer video games, live streaming, and real-time gaming.
5G will accelerate esports & video gaming growth in India in multiple ways:
No latency & lag
Multiplayer mobile gaming
Growth in user base in tier 2 and tier 3 cities
Unlocking AR & VR opportunity
Video Game live Streaming
High-end game downloads and updates in a jiffy
Inputs shared by esports and video gaming industry stakeholders on how 5G is going to revolutionize the industry:
Animesh Agarwal, Founder and CEO at 8bit Creatives, a leading gaming talent management agency and an ex-esports athlete himself:
Internet penetration and accessibility are the backbones of esports and mobile gaming. With the advent of 5G technology, users will get better connectivity speed which will, in turn, allow them to access and play high-resolution games. The last thing a gamer ever wants is lag, 5G is expected to help us say goodbye to lagging issues, once and for all. The upcoming metaverse, and all virtual reality technology that again would completely elevate the gaming experience, would be facilitated in large parts by 5G. One of the reasons why gaming has become so popular in the last few years is the multiplayer & social experience that games are now able to provide, and 5G is expected to make that even smoother. To be honest, 5G will impact gaming in more ways than one.
Last year, telecom giant, Airtel, hosted India’s first-ever cloud gaming demo on a LIVE Airtel 5G test network, and the results were outstanding. S8UL gamers were among a few to experience it firsthand & I myself also attended the event with the team. Our pro gamers, Mortal aka Naman Mathur and 8bit Mamba aka Salman Ahmad tested cloud gaming on the Airtel 5G test network at Manesar. They used mid-segment smartphones connected to a 3500 MHz high capacity spectrum band, recording speeds of over 1 Gbps and a latency of 10 milliseconds. Both the elite gamers agreed that 5G technology would have an impact on the efficiency and experience of online multiplayer genre games such as battle royale and racing games.
Mr Vishwalok Nath,Director, Esports Premier League:
5G is going to be a transformative step for the gaming industry across the globe. The highlight of this new generation of communication includes even faster download speeds, lower latency, hyper localization, increased network capacity, and better reliability. This leap in new features and innovation will enable game developers and storytellers to work on more immersive and engrossing gaming experiences. Faster downloads mean faster delivery of existing experiences with the ability to get more complex, large, and immersive worlds to the gamers. The industry has already spoken about cloud gaming and the impact of 5G on this technology. Though cloud gaming technology is still in its infancy, it still holds immense potential in democratizing gaming and bringing it to the masses. 5G will ensure a better cloud gaming experience for gamers with the help of Edge computing. It will also allow gamers without high-end gaming systems or hardware to play the latest AAA games.
Besides cloud gaming, 5G will also allow gamers to access newer experiences like AR and VR-based games right from their handheld devices. It is worth noting that it will be a while before 5G reaches the level of adoption we first saw with 4G but the wait will be worth it.
Rohit Agarwal, Founder & Director, Alpha Zegus, the next-gen marketing agency specializing in the domains of gaming & lifestyle:
Data prices (per GB) in India are among the lowest in the world. That, combined with super affordable smartphones starting from INR 5000, has completely revolutionized the gaming industry. We are now living in an era where a Tier-3 kid can enjoy casual gaming in good settings without hiccups.
Coming to 5G, we will see these casual gamers transform into streamers. Gamers from every part of India will be able to access cloud gaming platforms, thereby allowing them to play and enjoy 100s of high-quality games. This, in turn, will allow these gamers to create a niche of their own and start developing communities around them – all in all, creating more content creators & content consumers in the Indian gaming ecosystem.
Lastly, brands will also be able to leverage more complex (and higher quality) advertising innovations, be it in the metaspace or otherwise, since data speeds and usage will be of even lesser concern to the audience.
Mr Sagar Nair, Co-Founder & CEO, Qlan, The Gamer’s Social Network:
At nearly 500 million, India is currently second in terms of smartphone users in the world after China. the launch of the 5G data network will further boost the mobile gaming sector in India. More Data speed = More data transfer. We have heard professional gamers talk about “ping” many times and how it affects their gameplay and how even a slight drop can cost them the game, 5g aims to eliminate the loss of data packets being sent every second. 5G will unlock new economic opportunities and societal benefits which is very good news for Qlan as surfing through the web and social media platforms become very smooth with the introduction of such speed in the market. Even if you have a brief look at 4g, the speeds that it can achieve are better than most people’s wifi and most gamers prefer using a stable mobile data connection compared to choppy wifi. 5g aims to provide users with a consistent and lightning-fast internet connection, on the tap of their fingers which also holds the potential to increase the number of gamers in India. 5G is designed to support a 100x increase in traffic capacity and network efficiency compared to that of 4g. In essence, the mention of 5g technology put a smile on the face of every gamer out there!
Mr Lokesh Suji, Director, Esports Federation of India& Vice President of the Asian Esports Federation (AESF):
5G is going to bring about a paradigm shift in the cloud gaming sector, the superfast speeds, massive bandwidth and low latency of 5G Ultra Wideband are going to make gaming more collaborative, competitive, affordable and accessible. The advent of 5G is set to be a complete game-changer in every way. With growing smartphone penetration and a vast youth population, 5G-backed cloud gaming could spread to remote areas and offer gamers the right ecosystem to compete and excel in the international arena.
Streaming and watching live games experience will be enhanced with this disruption in technology, Video game updates are another big nightmare for our gamers, and these are not small 5-10 Mb updates, these are like 1 GB updates and it takes ample time to download, with 5G fast speed, the downloads will happen in a jiffy.