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The modernization of the enterprise and industrial network has become imperative for organizations to ensure that they meet the demands of a global market while delivering on the expectations of security, agility, flexibility and scale.

Today, machine-to-machine communications, augmented reality, artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT) and edge computing define the future of possibilities for enterprise and industrial operations. This requires organizations to invest and scale, using these technologies to go further, do more and innovate faster than ever before. It is the age of information, and those without a finger on the pulse of the data or the connectivity to drive it will fall behind.

Regardless of industry or sector, the priority is to run organizations better – to use digital technologies to modernize and transform intelligently, taking relevant approaches that are future-proof. But what does this mean?

Right now, it means investing in network and connectivity platforms that have the legs to stretch into any area of technology that the organization demands.

The next defining chapter of digital transformation

Modernizing the network is the first step towards comprehensive and evolving digital transformation. It allows the organization to innovate at speed because it does more than just connect the technology: it helps the business connect the dots.

This is particularly of value as 5G becomes an increasingly powerful tool that can be used to build not just connectivity on a national scale but also private networks with immense capabilities and scale. A private 5G network comes with a bundle of benefits – scale, low latency, low cost, speed, accessibility and reach – but only if it is designed and built using design-thinking principles and if it meets the strategic objectives of the organization.

Ultimately, the value of a private 5G network lies in its potential to put the organization ahead of the competition, and in offering an alternative to traditional telecommunications solutions. Built for purpose, a private network can adapt and evolve within the organization and meet stringent security, control and accessibility requirements. These have become critical in the era of information and regulation, where compliance is key to ensuring that the organization remains operational and reputationally intact.

The value of 5G

Of course, there's no overlooking the value of 5G when it comes to device management and building networks capable of handling significant volumes of devices without losing integrity and speed. With IoT gaining traction in South Africa and abroad, the ability to tap into this technology at a moment's notice will become immensely valuable over the next few years. Plus, a network with 5G capabilities can be translated to fit the dynamic requirements of multiple industries.

From manufacturing to mining and industrial plants, this high-end network removes the traditional limitations of reach and environment by dint of its ultra-high reliability and low latency. It takes the complexity out of the connectivity equation and hands the organization the keys to the technology kingdom.

The modern network also opens the door to a far more ubiquitous use of technology than before. There's also the added bonus of reducing the cost to business with lower power consumption – about 95% less than traditional networks – which means more room to scale to meet changing business demands, and range – a 5G network can achieve distances of up to 25km, a significant advantage in the South African market.

With the potential of 5G in mind and the possibilities that a private network can bring, it's easy to see why the modernization of the network has become a priority for most organizations. In South Africa, this drive is no less urgent than elsewhere in the world as organizations look to AI, IoT, connectivity and their technological capabilities to engage sustainable digital transformation.

Read more about our Private 5G offering.

Setumo Mohapi is Middle East and Africa Managed Networks and Collaboration Services Executive at Dimension Data

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