Metaverse 5g - The Meta Economist

5G: The answer to the Metaverse’s connectivity challenges

17 June 2022

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METAVERSE 5G - One of the main challenges facing the Metaverse in the near future, is access to connectivity and, therefore, the breaking down of the so-called digital divide. A fast and reliable connection that can handle an unlimited amount of data and information that will be exchanged and saved within the Metaverse is what the market requires. The answer may already be there, however, it is not widespread yet, especially in Italy.. We are talking about the much discussed 5g network.

The 5G to break down the digital divide

The term 5G - acronym of 5th Generation - indicates the fifth generation of mobile radio technologies. This is the evolution of the 4G/IMT-Advanced network that we access today with our mobile phones. However, the leap forward takes 5G far ahead of its predecessors. The main improvement features are:

  • optimization of the use of network resources by defining independent virtual subnets for each type of service
  • virtualization of most network devices and dynamic management of available bandwidth through automated SDN systems
  • the ability to handle more devices per unit area (about 1,000,000 devices per km² versus 1,000-100,000 per km² of 4G)
  • support for more latency-driven features to ensure "real-time" response time needed for critical applications
  • higher data rates, theoretically up to 10 gigabits per second (Gbit/s)
  • a significant reduction in power consumption (90% less than 4G for each bit transmitted).

These enhancements bring advantages for different aspects of the network, not just the one related to mobile devices. In fact, it will be mainly used as a general internet service provider and will make possible new applications of the Internet of Things (iot) and in machine to machine areas. This makes it a highly interesting technology for the development and evolution of the Metaverse.

An example of the application of 5G technology

The spread of the 5G network is not widespread and work is slow due to controversy and erroneous belief that it can cause serious damage to our health. Around the world, however, there have already been tested situations that highlight the potential of the new network and the infinite applications it can have.

An example is the first tattoo made by a remote-controlled robotic hand. The aim of the experience is to test the potential deriving from the very short latency time the 5G network offers. In other words, what we wanted to show is the time between the moment in which an action is imposed and the moment in which the reaction takes place.

At the beginning of 2021, the Dutch actress Stijn Fransen had a tattoo made by the tattoo artist Wes Thomas, who was miles away from her. The work was completed "physically" through a robotic mechanical arm made in 3D, controlled by the tattoo artist, and managed through a 5G connection.

The robotic arm is the brainchild of Wes Thomas himself. The London artist imagined the tattoo mechanism during lockdown. He was supported by a robotics expert. Together, they devised the robot arm, equipped with a special safe tattoo needle, able to stem any human error. Soon the design was completed, everything was 3D printed. Once the prototype was in hand, the various electric motors and actuators needed to move the arm and make the connection to a 5G smartphone were inserted.

The execution of the tattoo on the model Stijn Fransen took place in absolute safety, and with nanometric precision. It all happened as if the tattoo artist and tattooist were in exactly the same place.

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