Could 5G networks herald the arrival of a four-day work week?

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While many have advocated for a four day work week for some time now, Intel UK and futurologist Ian Pearson believe that the rollout of 5G networks could make this dream a reality.

Their reasoning is based on the idea that 5G could greatly enhance business and government productivity which would allow staff to finish a week's worth of work one day earlier than they can now. However, for a four-day week to become a reality, Intel and Pearson have highlighted a number of technologies in their new report that must be in place first.

Technologies required for a four-day work week

For the world to be connected over 5G, data centres must evolve with 5G data flows in mind. Intel and Pearson predict that data centres will change by focusing on AI, memory and storage in new ways to better serve a more connected world. This will allow IT teams to focus more on the needs of their teams and this will enable their roles to evolve over time.

The virtual office will also require an overhaul and 5G will be finally make good on the remote working promise that 4G was unable to deliver. There will be no more poor connections outside of the office and AR, VR and even holograms will give remote workers a better experience than they currently have making remote working a viable option for more employees.

The Internet of Things has grown in popularity but with the arrival of 5G, IoT will do more than enable remote monitoring and control and will instead act as a peripheral nervous system. With an estimated 50bn devices worldwide, IoT will transform a range of industries from agriculture to healthcare.

Artificial intelligence (AI) and analytics will enable businesses to extract valuable insights from the connected devices that make up the IoT. At the same time, humans will become more comfortable working alongside AI which will in turn boost their productivity to the point where a four-day working week is possible.

Autonomous driving vehicles that will rely heavily on 5G networks will turn a tedious commute into a chance to get some work done on the way to the office. When our commute time becomes part of the working day, the extra hours accumulated and work done on the road will also make a four-day work week more feasible.