01 September 2020

Much more than just gigabits: the promises of 5G

Networks are the foundation for the ongoing digital revolution. The global pandemic and ensuing economic crisis highlighted the vital importance of networks and the major role digital technology plays in our societies. And now they’re essential for driving a sustainable economic recovery.
Networks are also central to our activity at Orange, and they are key to us offering an unmatched customer experience. When it comes to 5G, we firmly believe it is vital tool for boosting business competitiveness and regional development.



5G, the new generation very high-speed network

The network 5G will complement existing networks while providing the groundbreaking technology we need to enable national and regional prosperity improving performance in the following ways:

  • technological performance, because ultimately it is a more powerful, intelligent, flexible and reliable network. 
  • economic performance, because it opens up new possibilities for consumers and businesses.
  • environmental performance, because the network will be up to 10 times more efficient than 4G by 2025 and also provide solutions to some of today’s environmental issues.
  • industrial performance, because it drives innovation and regional attractiveness for businesses facing strong international competition.




A more energy-efficient mobile network

5G is more energy efficient than previous technologies in terms of consumption (energy consumed per quantity of data transported), and spectrum use (quantity of data transported per spectral slice). 5G antennas already consume half the energy as their 4G counterparts per GB transported, and by 2025, widespread deployment will mean they consume 10 times less per GB transported, while accommodating more users and carrying 10 times more traffic.  



5G opens the path to new uses  

In the second stage of 5G deployments, we’re anticipating major developments in various sectors such as manufacturing, health, transport, media and smart cities.
Orange 5G Lab: think, experiment and bring future use cases to life, thanks to a 5G network.



In businesses, factories and hospitals,


With 5G it will be possible to connect a massive amount of devices, collect the data generated and analyse it in near real-time and in an increasingly relevant way thanks to artificial intelligence. 

In telemedicine, this will facilitate the transmission of critical data for patients receiving treatment at home and also enable remote surgery, for example.  

5G will help to control and connect industrial robots, improving productivity thorough carrying out maintenance on industrial equipment or improving security through automating building surveillance.

5G is also one of the solutions being looked at by a number of companies to enable their ecological transition as it allows remote collaboration and immersive virtual events thereby reducing the environmental impact of business travel. 

In smart cities, public authorities can cross-reference traffic data in real time and enable intelligent traffic control systems (lights and signalling) to improve traffic flow, reduce jams and therefore decrease pollution.


5G trials: find out more about our pilot


Orange and Schneider Electric are experimenting with the use of industrial 5G in a factory in France. Schneider Electric Le Vaudreuil factory – a pilot for digital transformation – is the first factory in France to trial industrial 5G with Orange. We have deployed an indoor, private, virtualised network on an experimental network architecture to enable local data processing using Edge computing technologies. The indoor 5G-enabled trials will support two use cases: augmented reality applied to maintenance technician activities and the implementation of a telepresence robot for remote visits.


For the general public


First and foremost, 5G will offer the best connection for your mobile services, thanks to a faster and more responsive network that will eventually offer an experience comparable to home fibre. It will also enable more interactive, immersive and contextual mobile experiences, enriched via virtual or augmented reality, for training, working, communicating, entertaining and managing everyday admin. PCs and games consoles will also be replaced by cloud gaming as people can play together from their smartphones with very low latency.

icone 5G home



A rational deployment

5G deployment is underway, focusing on where there is the greatest need while paying attention to people’s concerns. Progressive 5G roll-out on existing 4G sites in Europe, supplementing existing networks, in cities and in areas of economic activity, depending on the availability of frequencies and changes in use. At the same time, we continue the extension of 4G coverage in our operating countries in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. The same is true when it comes to fibre and building “information highways” through submarine cables.

Where are we now ?

icone solaris chronomètre

In 2020, the deployment of 5G will be organised on 4G sites in areas where the network is heavily used (very dense areas), with the benefit of a significant improvement in outdoor flows for everyday use. With speeds of up to 2Gbits/s in 2020, 5G will enable the greatest number of people to be connected in an optimal manner.

icone solaris iot logistique

In 2023, the 5G core will be accessible to the public network. Improved performance enabling greater levels of security and quality of service (slicing): for industry, connected vehicles, smart cities, health, ... 5G will allow more objects to be connected : industrial applications, process optimisation, etc, and a greater reactivity, near real for online gaming, industrial robotics and, ultimetaly, autonomous connected cars.



Some questions

Our role, as a trusted operator, is to shed a well-argued light on the questions that everyone is asking about new technologies.

11 definitions to understand 5G terms

5G and radio waves
Orange complies with all regulations in force when it comes to 5G and radio waves, having already applied them for previous generations of networks. 

5G: 5 myths examined more closely 
As with any new technology, 5G has raised its fair share of questions and concerns. To understand more, we’ve examined five misconceptions surrounding this new generation of very high speed network. Here are our findings.


5G and health: the latest risk assessment from experts?


Thousands of studies into radio waves have been conducted to determine the health risks. Until now, health authorities have concluded that there are no health risks over and above the limits recommended by the WHO.

increased energy consumption?


By 2025, 5G will be up to 10 times more energy efficient than 4G.

do we really need it?



5G is mandatory in order to maintain the quality of the networks and support the development of current and future uses.


Does 5G emit continuous radio waves?


5G only activates the antennas on demand, unlike the previous generation.

will new antennas be everywhere?


5G is mainly being deployed on our existing sites. Later, local needs may require a few additional antennas.

and what do we do with Fibre and 4G?


5G will complete and modernise existing networks: 4G and Fibre. Very high speed broadband is progressing everywhere to reduce the digital divide.


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