People are excited about the future of 5G-enabled entertainment and are willing to pay more – but there is still much the industry needs to do to create anticipation and close the 5G knowledge gap.

This is one of the findings from a new Intel study, “5G Economics of Entertainment Report”, which finds that Americans are ready to open their pocketbooks for the enhanced experiences that 5G will bring to media and entertainment.

“Digital disruption is eroding the borders that once separated entertainment, media, technology and telecommunications companies,” says Jonathan Wood, GM: business development and partnerships, 5G next generation and standards at Intel. “The next generation of media and entertainment growth is not just about what content companies create but how seamlessly customers can access it and the unique ways they can interact with it.”

However, it is not quite so cut and dried. Intel’s study shows that many people regard 5G as simply another “speed bump” and do not fully grasp the scale of change 5G has the potential to usher in.

This hypothesis was proven in a recent, but unrelated, Intel-sponsored consumer study that found 58% of Americans admit to not being knowledgeable or ever having heard of 5G.

Recognising the knowledge gap, Intel set out with this latest study to paint a picture of the type of new entertainment experiences 5G would enable and then asked people which they valued and their willingness to pay more.

Over half (54%) of respondents said they were willing to switch to 5G for all their connected home needs. When asked to rank half a dozen future experiences 5G will enable, next-gen TV (54%), augmented instruction (41%) and immersive live events (40%) topped the wish list.

When it comes to what people are willing to pay for 5G-enabled experiences, household income had no bearing, but there was a definite hunger for 5G among the younger cohort. A staggering 72% of Gen Zers (age 16-25) expressed their willingness to pay $20 per month more than for current 4G services. Forty percent of Americans would pay an additional $10 extra per month, and 27% would pay more than $20 per month.

Top drivers of enthusiasm for 5G include faster speed (64%), reliability (43%) and responsiveness (36%).