How 5G is Growing to Expand Private Cellular Networks for Business and Government

By James Rose

I like to tell people that just before COVID, NASA awarded a contract to build a 4G network on the moon to support future NASA missions, including a lunar base with SpaceX. I think it's realistic that in my career, we should be able to see an astronaut FaceTime their family from the moon.


As a bit of a cellular historian, I like to talk about where we've been the last 10 to 15 years. It's important to understand how technology has evolved in order to predict where it's going. For example, every time you hear a wave of “G”, you get flooded with marketing from cellular providers telling you about all the latest, greatest, newest stuff that's coming.

But back when 4G was being conceptualized, the executives of the large cellular providers understood video on phones as being the predominant use case. There was no mad science behind it. But what we didn't anticipate was the wave of entrepreneurial companies that were popping up. Think about Uber, Snapchat, TikTok, Netflix — none of these were enabled then.

I would have never thought, back when I was in that 4G transition, that we’d hire strangers to go pick food up for us from a restaurant or grocery store and drop if off on our doorstep. But it makes sense now, and it's a way of life.

The 5G Evolution for Organizations Using Wireless Networks

There's going to be the same entrepreneurial innovations happening with 5G. And I think the really important thing to think about is that now with 5G and private 5G specifically, you see the economics start to make sense for organizations.

I'm sure if you Google how many IoT connections do we anticipate in the next 5 to 10 years, you'll hear a number in the billions, but that's at the macro level. When you think about organizations who are really thinking about tens of thousands—even hundreds of thousands of IoT connections, that's hard to scale when you're using a public network.

And so private networks are going to enable those billions of connections to actually occur, essentially putting connection points in areas that only wires could reach before. You can now make them wireless.

It’s going to fundamentally change a variety of different industries.

Private 5G Solutions Available Today

What we've been doing at UScellular for the last five years is gathering intel from various industries, getting everybody's different kinds of strategy—both from an economics and from a solutioning perspective—and building a range of solutions.

If you Google “Private 5G,” you'll see a different interpretation from every type of company. But what was important for us is that organizations aren't thinking about conforming their strategy to what a public carrier decides is the most scalable solution to bring to the market.

Instead, we think it's important that you bring a range of solutions that can better fit the existing strategy that you are already thinking about within your technology.

WHY UScellular®

UScellular is at the cutting edge of private cellular network technology and ready to use our reliable 5G network to grow your success. Contact your local business sales expert at 866-616-5574 to get started.