State of Connectivity 2024 Reveals Utilization of 5G to Expand Business

Cradlepoint unveiled the State of Connectivity 2024, an annual worldwide research report exploring the business implications of connectivity. Conducted in collaboration with Censuswide, the report surveyed 1,003 decision-makers from various industries in the United States. It revealed a growing trend among businesses to utilize 5G to combat frequent wired network outages, enable innovative technologies like AI and Industrial IoT, adapt to evolving cybersecurity threats, and achieve sustainability objectives.

Most notably, investing in cellular connectivity is proving to be a strategic business decision to combat the volatility and constraints of wired connectivity while matching the demands of rapid digitalization. The State of Connectivity 2024 report found that lapses in wired connectivity are resulting in costly downtime. In fact, more than half of technology decision makers (54%) estimated their organizations face 1-2 hours of connectivity downtime a week due to network failure, and over one third of firms (34%), experienced as much as 3-4 hours per week of connectivity downtime. While utilizing cellular as failover connectivity is effective in promoting networking resiliency, it can be even more beneficial as a primary connectivity source, with cellular networks enabling 99.99% of network uptime.

Despite the proven benefits of 5G and government incentives, the survey revealed that many firms still face barriers to 5G adoption. A third (33%) of technology decision makers cite a lack of skills necessary to adopt the technology, while others feel unsure about the security implications across their organizations (31%). Additionally, certain organizations are worried about cost (32%) or struggling to see a clear return on investment (29%).

Part of addressing business continuity concerns, leaders are also prioritizing network security. With business leaders reporting that their organizations have fallen victim to phishing attacks, ransomware and stolen credentials in the previous year, addressing security is a top priority in 2024. In fact, 49% of businesses said they have been subject to a network security attack in the last 12 months. Of those that were the target of a network security attack, company data was most frequently targeted (42%), with 35% of executives saying these security breaches usually result in data loss. As more organizations seek to realize the benefits of an expanded edge, reliable security options are essential to match the growing scale of their network. This is why, according to the report, organizations are leaning into security solutions that have Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) and zero trust principles.

According to the report, sustainability is identified as a priority for businesses across the U.S. as it streamlines workflows and saves operational costs. Sixty-eight percent of technology decision makers believe sustainability plays a key role in their company’s short-term and long-term goals, and more importantly, it is seen as a vehicle to improve revenues (65.8%). To accomplish this, 65% of executives agree that their business needs smart facilities that incorporate IoT and connected devices to operate more efficiently and sustainably. U.S. businesses are on the right path, with 84.2% of those surveyed revealing they use IoT devices across their business. Moreover, in addition to cellular networks (29%) and equipment sensors (38%), executives are planning to invest in technologies like AI/ML (38.3%) to reduce waste and make their facilities more efficient.

“These findings reinforce the urgency for enterprises to prioritize resilient and secure network connectivity as industries across the U.S. navigate uncertain economic climates, emerging technology, advanced threat landscapes, changing consumer demands and talent shortages,” said Donna Johnson, CMO at Cradlepoint. “The data also confirms that 5G’s prevalence in the enterprise is resulting in a positive impact on sustainability goals as we work to reach net zero emissions, prioritize network security, and eliminate downtime so operations can increase at scale.”

“Organizations are seeing the powerful combination of 5G connectivity, generative AI, and IoT in real time. To keep up with the speed of innovation, investments in the right network approach are crucial to remove complexities, direct certain traffic, and protect sensitive company data,” said Johnson. “Controllable, scalable and secure networks for critical business functions come with strategic 5G adoption.”

The full Cradlepoint State of Connectivity 2024 Report United States can be found here.

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Taylor Graham, marketing grad with an inner nature to be a perpetual researchist, currently all things IT. Personally and professionally, Taylor is one to know with her tenacity and encouraging spirit. When not working you can find her spending time with friends and family.