5G Strategy




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Who should attend

  • Telecommunication network leaders
  • Entrepreneurs
  • Research and development leaders
  • Operations managers and leaders
  • IT strategy managers
  • Supply chain managers
  • Business leaders looking to better understand the impact of 5G

About the course

How are you preparing for the next wave of digital transformation? Revenues from 5G wireless technologies are anticipated to exceed $230 billion by 2025, offering dramatic improvements over previous generations of wireless communication and enabling significant business opportunities for applications never seen before.

From fixed broadband markets to B2B applications such as smart cities and Internet of Things (IoT), this program will explore the capabilities of 5G and identify innovative products and services you can develop to better meet the needs of customers.

To help ensure your 5G-enabled innovation is successful, you will develop strategies to grow your network of users so you reach the critical mass needed to launch that network and create value for your users. You’ll also have the opportunity to analyze the ecosystem of companies that influence 5G applications — suppliers, competitors, complementors — and determine how to differentiate your technology effectively. Finally, you’ll explore how to create a sustainable business model and protect your product from threats such as competitor imitation or substitution, ultimately positioning yourself for success in this rapidly growing market.

Key course takeaways

  • Examine the key capabilities of 5G communication technologies focusing on speed, latency, reliability, data transfer capacity, and device-to-device communication
  • Identify new products, services, or activities you can develop that take advantage of 5G technologies
  • Build a network of users to reach the critical mass necessary to propel the growth of your 5G innovation
  • Develop strategies to launch digital platforms and position your product within the ecosystem for long-term success
  • Define your business model and value proposition to assess the viability of your product
  • Apply market levers that reduce the ability of others to imitate your innovation


Innovating with 5G

5G wireless technologies offer dramatic improvements over previous generations of wireless communication and will enable applications never seen before. By developing a thorough understanding of these capabilities, you will be prepared to take advantage of these improvements and identify innovative products and services you can develop to better meet the needs of your customers.

In this course, Cornell University professor Aija Leiponen will guide you through the key capabilities of 5G wireless networks, including significantly increased speed, reliability, responsiveness, and device-to-device communication. Using an analytical framework and other supporting tools, you will begin to re-envision your business operations, products, and services by utilizing these transformative technologies.

Additionally, you will hear from industry experts who will provide straightforward explanations of complicated technologies and offer case studies from a variety of industries that will enable you to more quickly visualize the possibilities for your organization. At the conclusion of this course, you will be better prepared to capitalize on 5G wireless technologies and proactively identify innovative opportunities that will move you to the forefront of your industry.

Launching 5G Applications

5G innovations will not only be based on the telecommunications network, they will also often have a social network structure to themselves. Services taking advantage of 5G might involve people communicating with each other using phone handsets with VR or AR capabilities or firms using IoT technologies to collect data and remotely adjust machine operations. In both cases, 5G enables communication and information exchange through a network of connected devices or people. In this course, you will devise a strategy to build your network which involves getting many parties to adopt your innovation simultaneously. Finally, you will manage the boundaries of the network to your advantage and help customers and complementors switch into your product or service while moderating entry of competitors. These are basic network strategies that are critical for any innovator of communication network applications to master.

Building Your Market Advantage

Your business model is the organizational arrangement that allows your 5G innovation to thrive in the technological and business ecosystem. First you will articulate the value proposition of your offering: who benefits from the product and how. Next you will design your intended revenue mechanism, that is, who pays for what and how much. You will also consider how much it costs to create and maintain the offering. If the resulting price-cost margin is positive, then the innovation has immediate potential. If not, you will need to reconsider how to either further improve and differentiate the innovation to enhance users' willingness to pay or lower its cost of production. Once the margin is positive, you can then develop strategies to protect that positive margin over time. There are two critical strategic challenges. First, you will explore strategies to prevent imitation of your product. If it can't be protected and competitors can easily copy or substitute the product, then there is no long-term business viability. Second, you will consider the scalability of the innovation. If the margin is positive but there is a high fixed cost of development, then the market for your product needs to be large or rapidly growing in order to provide an opportunity to scale the business.

Elective Course (1 Course)

Preparing for Digital Transformation

All businesses rely on business model evolution through identifying and using new digital tools. In this course, you will identify the best method to choose the best ideas for digital transformation for your organization or entrepreneurial venture. You will conduct a builder audit to assess the current state of the innovation process and establish what the ideal state of building should be. After completing the builder audit, you will produce a digitization audit, where you will assess the current state of digital tools utilization in sourcing, organizational processes, customer interaction, and after-sales. This analysis will lead you to identify opportunities for digital technology use.

Introducing New Products: Successes and Failures

You begin this course by considering the importance of new products and services to the overall health of a firm, and you look at some of the risks these products entail. Why do so many otherwise good products fail to achieve broad market diffusion? You analyze the significance of product characteristics such as complexity and communicability on customers' decisions to adopt new products. Then you consider innovations in terms of a continuum.

In the second part of the course, you look at new products through the lens of the product diffusion process. This process shows how different customer segments enter the market at different times and why. Finally, you learn how the diffusion process is related to the overall product life cycle.

Blockchain Fundamentals

Variations of blockchain technology have existed for decades, but the recent hype is the result of a new kind of blockchain, one that distributes the responsibility of verifying transactions and thereby making it more secure, transparent, and enduring. This course will teach you to understand the differences between the blockchain technology of today and the former, less accessible and less transparent blockchains of decades past. You will dig into the mechanics of the [newer] Bitcoin blockchain protocol and how it ensures the longevity of a decentralized public ledger as well as how it gets consensus for approving transactions. With that knowledge you will then work to analyze what problem(s) blockchain technology aims to solve, how it solves them, and how to make sense of the promises that developers of new blockchain protocols make.

You will analyze a sample protocol to determine why the protocol might not satisfy the key properties that make a “good” blockchain secure. You will be better prepared to critically analyze all the endless new cryptocurrencies that emerge and the underlying blockchain technology that they operate on. You will outline several industries and business purposes for which the blockchains of today make sense. You will solve a computational puzzle in Excel to better understand how transactions get verified in the Bitcoin blockchain protocol. In the course project, you will design a theoretical blockchain for a company, outlining advantages and disadvantages of the properties you will think the blockchain should have based on the unique aspects of your business.

The courses Cryptocurrencies and Ledgers and Cryptography Essentials are required to be completed prior to starting this course.


Aija Leiponen

Aija Leiponen is a Professor in the Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management at Cornell University (U.S.) and is also affiliated with Aalto University in Helsinki, Finland. Her research focuses on organizational strategies in innovation, particularly cooperation between organizations. She...

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5G Strategy at eCornell

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Coursalytics is an independent platform to find, compare, and book executive courses. Coursalytics is not endorsed by, sponsored by, or otherwise affiliated with any business school or university.

Full disclaimer.

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