What Is 5G, and What Will the Download Speeds Be Like?

Understanding 5G.
The next-generation wireless network technology, or 5G, is predicted to revolutionize both personal and professional life. Compared to the current 4G LTE network, it will be faster and able to support more connected devices, advancements that will pave the way for a new wave of innovative items. Although 5G networks are still in their infancy and have only recently started to roll out in the United States and elsewhere, analysts believe they have enormous promise.

Why 5G?
Businesses compete to have the largest or fastest 5G networks. Additionally, nations are striving to be the first to roll out countrywide, fully operational 5G. This is so that disruptive new technologies can be fueled by the advantages of the new technology, which are anticipated to benefit not only consumers but also corporations, infrastructure, and defense applications.

advantages of 5G?
The excitement surrounding 5G is heavily centered around speed. But there are also other benefits. Since 5G will have more bandwidth than current networks, it will be able to support many more connected devices. Therefore, there won’t be any more sporadic service when a place is busy. And it will make it possible for even more linked gadgets, including self-driving cars and smart toothbrushes.

In addition, 5G will almost eliminate latency, which is the amount of time it takes for a cell phone (or other connected device) to send a request to a server and receive a response. Additionally, it will facilitate and speed up connection with cloud computing platforms like Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services.

How does it function?
Signals from 5G use new radio frequencies, necessitating the upgrade of radios and other hardware on cell towers. Depending on the resources a wireless carrier has, there are three different ways to build a 5G network: a low-band network (large coverage area but only 20% faster than 4G), a high-band network (superfast speeds but signals struggle to move through solid surfaces), and a mid-band network (balances speed and coverage).

Carriers constructing ultra-rapid 5G networks must attach many tiny cell sites, roughly the size of pizza boxes, to light poles, walls, or towers, frequently close together. Because of this, the majority of superfast networks are being installed city by city. Most US carriers will eventually have a combination of the various network types, enabling both extensive coverage and quick speeds.

How quickly will download times be?
According to the wireless industry trade body GSMA, the fastest 5G networks are anticipated to be at least ten times faster than 4G LTE. They may someday be 100 times faster, according to some experts. When compared to 7 minutes with 4G, that is quick enough to download a two-hour movie in less than 10 seconds. The actual download rates will vary depending on a number of variables, including the network traffic and location.

How would one use it?
Consumers must own 5G-capable devices in order to connect to and utilize a 5G network. A number of device manufacturers, including LG, OnePlus, Samsung, Motorola, and Huawei, have introduced 5G phones. A 5G iPhone from Apple is anticipated to be released later in fall 2020. Some businesses, like manufacturers and the NFL, are also collaborating with carriers to set up personal 5G networks so they can take use of the technology before it is widely deployed.

Are there any negatives?
Years will pass before 5G is widely adopted; according to industry trade body GSMA, by 2025, about half of mobile connections will be 5G. (the rest will be older tech, like 4G and 3G). Regulators and others are worried about the security of 5G, particularly since critical technology like self-driving cars and healthcare systems will be based on the network.

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