If you haven’t been living under a rock for the past few years, you will have likely heard about 5G. 5G data connectivity is set to revolutionise the way we interact with our devices.
With something so revolutionary breaking into different markets, objections are bound to arise.
Some people are confused as to what 5G actually is, many are concerned about the implications and others are really excited about the possibilities it holds. We’ve compiled the 9 most common 5G-related questions below.
To find out the answers to these questions, keep on reading!
1. What is 5G?
5G can be described as ‘the fifth generation of mobile internet connectivity.’ 5G looks to set a new benchmark for data connectivity by promising faster downloads, uploads, a wider range of coverage, lower response and connections that are much more reliable.
5G differs from previous mobile generations (2G, 3G, 4G) as it is not defined by a single form of technology. It aims to act as a network of networks, binding together multiple existing and future networks.
5G will also enable more devices to connect to the mobile internet at the same time.
2. Which Countries Are Currently Using 5G?
The first country that is set to introduce 5G to its population is South Korea. South Korea’s mobile carriers have spent billions on marketing in order to get as many customers to sign up as possible.
With a population of 27 million, South Korea is expecting around one million 5G users by the end of 2019. The mobile giant that is Samsung will be the first company to unveil a fully 5G smartphone with the Galaxy S10 and the Galaxy Fold.
3. What Will 5G Do?
5G is ready to be the fastest and most robust technology that humans have ever seen. The impact it is going to have on our lives is quite remarkable. Expect to be able to download films in a matter of seconds, have amazing network reliability and use 5G in a range of devices across your home.
Not only will 5G be amazing for consumers, but 5G is also looking to provide a host of benefits to businesses too. Businesses will be able to have greater levels of connectivity meaning efficiency can be increased dramatically. 5G will also give businesses the ability to give consumers access to information in speeds that have never been achieved before.
In the near future, everything we interact on a daily basis will be transformed by 5G. This technological shift will not only change how people interact with the world but will change the way businesses and society operates.
4. What is the difference between 4G and 5G?
One of the main differences between 4G and 5G is speed. 5G will be able to achieve connectivity and data speeds that were impossible with 4G. But instead of just describing how fast 5G is, let’s get into the figures. 5G is set to achieve speeds of 100 gigabits per second and be 100 times faster than 4G. Not too bad then?
Latency can be defined as the time that passes from the moment that information sent from a device can be used by the receiver. Expect a drastic difference in latency between 4G and 5G meaning that your mobile data connection will act as a replacement to your WiFi and internet modem.
5G will also fix many bandwidth issues that are so frequent with phones on 4G and 3G networks. The reason for these bandwidth issues is that there are so many different devices connected to mobile networks. With this comes the lack of infrastructure to support the devices effectively. 5G, on the other hand, will be able to handle current devices and other emerging technologies.
5. Will 5G Replace WiFi?
While 5G looks to set the world alight, it doesn’t necessarily mean Wi-Fi is now dead. A good indicator for this is the sheer amount of existing and in-production WiFi devices that exist. There are literally billions of WiFi-based devices currently out there such as phones, tablets, game consoles, TV and much more.
Many businesses also primarily use WiFi to connect to the internet. In fact, the WiFi market is growing instead of shrinking so expect 5G and Wi-Fi to share a similar space for years to come.
6. How Much Will 5G Cost?
If you are looking for a cheap phone deal, we’re sorry to tell you but 5G probably isn’t for you. If forking out the extra money every month sounds reasonable, 5G may be the perfect way to upgrade your phone. The cost of 5G will mainly depend on the type of phone, your network provider and the type of contract.
Here are some of the latest phones in the UK that will be 5G ready:
Galaxy S10 on EE, 5G for £79 per month for 30GB of data and unlimited calls and texts and £10.
OnePlus 7 Pro 5G for £69 per month plus £50 upfront, with 30GB of data as standard.
OnePlus on an EE exclusive, costing £64 per month and £50 upfront over two years.
LG V50 ThinQ, £79 per month for 30GB plus £50 upfront.
7. Can 5G Be Used For Home Internet?
Not only is 5G being utilised in mobile phones but it is also breaking into the home internet space. Verizon will be the first network to launch a 5G home internet product, with the fitting name: 5G Home. A 5G home internet product will act similar to standard cable service.
However, with 5G Home, you will have a 5G modem that will connect to Verizon’s servers allowing you to sync up with other devices to access the internet. The 5G modem would communicate with Verizon devices that are placed every 500 to 1000 feet in your local area e.g. streetlights.
8. Will 5G help rural areas?
It seems like 5G has the answers to everything, doesn’t it? Well, maybe not just yet. Although 5G could be a viable connection method for home internet service in rural areas, connectivity would still be slow if there were no small cells nearby.
In the UK, however, it is part of government plans to speed up the roll-out of 5G and improve mobile coverage in rural areas. So, if you are in the UK, there may be hope after all.
9. Will 5G require new phones?
Unfortunately, mobile phones that aren’t made for 5G will sadly not support 5G. The next-generation connectivity will only be available through new phones made especially for 5G.
While this may disappoint a lot of people, it is understandable from a technological point of view as to why this may not be feasible yet.
For further reading check out the article from Comms Consult; “is the UK ready for 5g?”