5G Underscores the Importance of Peer-to-Peer Data Marketplaces

The fifth generation of wireless technology (5G), now at various stages of deployment around the world, brings connectivity upgrades that present huge opportunities. The upgrades will drive advancements in and the utility of technologies that integrate data such as artificial Intelligence (AI), Augmented Reality (AR), and the Internet of Things (IoT). This will unlock a wide variety of value-added applications, from self-driving vehicle networks to universal real-time supply chain visibility. Of course, there will also be challenges associated with the increased volume and relevance of data. The challenges are mostly related to data security and data ownership. Therefore, as 5G rolls out, peer-to-peer marketplaces that facilitate the fair and secure exchange of data will serve as a foundational piece of IT infrastructure. Such marketplaces, by securely and efficiently connecting data providers and data buyers, will unlock insights hidden within the data, providing more value, and unleashing more opportunities.

What upgrades are brought by 5G?

5G is said to improve bandwidth by an order of magnitude. While this is an important advancement, 5G also brings other upgrades that are arguably more impactful. The three key upgrades in this respect are lower latency, an increase in the number of devices that can be connected in a given area, and a decrease in the power consumption needed for devices to connect.

Latency refers to the delay between the moment an instruction is sent and the time it can be acted upon. While latency in 4G networks is about 200 milliseconds, 5G is said to reduce latency to just 1 millisecond. This has important implications for applications such as self-driving cars, which need extremely low latency to be able to interact with other cars and other devices in order to, for example, form a network that can unlock safety and efficiency improvements.

In terms of connected devices, 5G enables about 1 million connected devices per 1 square kilometer, a 100 times improvement over 4G’s capacity. This has important implications for the Internet of Things (IoT). There are already approximately 50 billion internet-connected devices, but we have barely reached the dawn of the IoT era. In Europe, the average household already has five connected devices and this trend is set to continue as everything from refrigerators to shoes go online. While 4G networks represented a bottleneck for IoT growth, 5G means there is essentially no limit to the number of devices that can be connected. 

The final key upgrade, reduced power consumption, is important because it enables IoT devices to stay online for months or years without the need for human assistance. This supports the growth and relevance of IoT networks, unlocking more potential applications.

What is the current state of 5G’s roll out?

The number and size of regions supporting 5G is growing rapidly, and early use cases are already emerging. 

In June 2019, China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology officially issued licenses for the launch of commercial 5G networks in the country. China Mobile, the world’s largest operator in terms of subscribers, has already announced a total of 55.6 million subscribers in the 5G segment. Singapore is expected to start commercial 5G from January 2021 and aims to have 5G covering at least half of the city-state by the end-2022. AIS, Thailand's largest operator with 42 million subscribers and which is backed by Singapore Telecommunications, has launched 5G networks in 158 hospitals in Bangkok and major cities across Southeast Asia's second largest economy. The 5G network is helping hospitals launch telemedicine services and robots that help prevent direct contact between doctors and patients - a striking measure in times of COVID-19.

According to the latest forecast by Gartner, the worldwide 5G network infrastructure market revenue will almost double in 2020 to reach $8.1 billion. 

What applications are unlocked by 5G?

The upgrades brought by 5G will accelerate a wide array of innovations in all sectors of the economy, from logistics to agriculture, retail, and manufacturing. Broadly speaking, by connecting more devices and increasing the speed of communication between those devices, we can automate real-time actions in the physical world.

  • For example, we can create a network of self-driving vehicles that work in tandem to ensure safety and efficiency. At the same time, by gathering higher quality data from more and more devices, we can derive more actionable insights that provide real value add.
  • For example IoT devices running on 5G can enhance real-time universal supply chain visibility, thereby unlocking more advanced track & trace capacities, improving just-in-time manufacturing, and adding to supply-chain resiliency.
  • In agriculture, improved connectivity can lead to more automation and provide data-driven insights that improve efficiencies, reduce wastes, and boost outputs.
  • The upgrades are foundational for the development of smart cities as they will enable advancements like coordinated traffic flows, improved security, and energy efficiency advancements.

Stay tuned as we’ll deep dive into some applications in our future articles!

How do marketplaces for data fit into this?

The volume and variety of devices generating data is increasingly exponentially. A few examples include:

- Sensors in motors that provide tolerance and efficiency readings

- Sensors in farmer’s fields that provide soil acidity, rain, sun, temperature, and wind readings 

- Cameras and speed sensors for traffic data

- Heart rate and blood pressure trackers.

Sensor owners often do not have the capacity or will to act on the data generated by their sensors. This could be because they don’t have enough volume of data. It could also be because they don’t have knowledge of the value of their data.

As more and more data of higher and higher quality and relevance joins the milieu thanks to the introduction of 5G, there’s a greater and greater need for a place to exchange it. A marketplace for data enables those with the incentive to pay for the data they need to gain the insights from that data, thereby earning them more than they paid. Such a marketplace will also enable those who generate data to gain value from it simply by selling it. 

What kind of marketplace for data do we need?

Ideally it should enable the peer-to-peer transaction of data in such a way that marketplace participants can:

  1. Easily find each other 

  2. Securely exchange real-time or aggregated data for currency

  3. Not pay high fees to an intermediary.

When it comes to the technical requirements of such a marketplace, data flow management, security, and data privacy are critical prerequisites. Databroker.global fits all of the above requirements, both technical and philosophical.

Databroker.global is a next generation, decentralized marketplace for data. It is a portal that enables the peer-to-peer trading of data between organizations. Users of the Databroker marketplace can manage all aspects of their transactions directly within the platform, which leverages blockchain technology to ensure data is transferred directly and securely from the seller’s system to the buyer, with no third-party intervention.

Public and private organisations that are collecting critical and valuable data have an opportunity to leverage our technology and share and sell their data on the Databroker platform. 


For those organisations, we offer:


  • widespread visibility of your data and increased awareness of your organisation thanks to our global reach;

  • full control of your data as it never touches the Databroker system; and

  • instant and secure sharing and selling of data without having to invest in data transfer technology or billing systems.

As a platform that enables marketplace participants to mutually benefit from data,  Databroker is proud to take its place as foundational infrastructure in the information age.

Interested in teaming up with Databroker? Contact us at hello@databroker.global

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