5G is now up and running in the UK. EE and Vodafone have both launched their fifth-generation mobile networks, Three will launch theirs this month with O2 is set to join the party next month. Find out what you need to know about 5G below.
Brilliant. But what exactly is 5G, and what does it mean for you? We have picked out 5 key points around 5G that will help give you a good insight!
1. 5G is fast
Think the 20-25Mb speeds of 4G are already pretty quick? How does 200-250Mb grab you? Typical 5G speeds are ten times faster than 4G. If you are fortunate enough to find the perfect conditions the connection could even go better than that. Three are even claiming that their network could hit a potential 2Gb.
It doesn’t stop there. Industry experts believe 5G could eventually deliver speeds up to an incredible 20Gb.
What do the faster speeds mean and what do you need to know about 5G? It will ultimately improve everything you do online. From simple browsing to sharing huge files, it’ll deliver instantaneous app downloads, and even allow you to watch Netflix in 4K on your daily commute.
2. It’ll work in crowded places
5G fixes one of the biggest frustrations of 4G, the limited capacity. You’ll know the story: you try to use your phone in a crowded place and then have to struggle along with a frustratingly slow connection – if you manage to get one at all that is! The network simply isn’t setup to handle the amount of traffic we’re throwing at it.
The 5G network will enable two and a half times as many devices to be connected at once, and to download a whole lot more data while they’re there. That means no more waiting around when you want to go online.
3. 5G will be great for broadband
The faster speeds and higher capacity are vital for the population. They don’t just mean that we get faster streaming and sharing on our smartphones, they will also completely revolutionise mobile broadband.
If you need a data connection on your laptop while you’re on the road, you can expect more reliable performance, faster speeds, and, best of all, significantly higher data allowances. Give it chance and 5G could even become a decent option for home broadband, particularly in more remote areas where the existing fibre network is so poor.
4. You’ll need new devices
Yeah, this one is a bit of a downer. Your existing 4G-enabled devices like phones, tablets, laptops, watches and dongles will not work on the 5G network. You will have to replace them all. That includes your iPhone, iPad, Samsung Galaxy, and everything else in between.
The good news? There’s no rush to do this. There aren’t too many 5G devices right now, and they carry a premium price. Unless you’re an early adopter of such technologies, you may want to hang fire for a couple of years before 5G equipment is a necessity. By then, devices will support it as standard anyway. In the meantime, your 4G kit will continue to work just as well as it always has.
5. The roll-out will take some time
So when will you be able to use 5G? Like we started this piece with, it’s available right now…but only in major cities like London, Manchester, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Belfast. By the end of 2019 though it will be available in over 30 locations, from Bournemouth to Birkenhead, and then in over 50 places by the end of 2020. Different networks will target different places, so you might need to switch. It’s worth keeping an eye-out too on when 5G might be available in your hometown.
But the roll-out will take some time. Even areas that do have 5G won’t have blanket coverage, and if you’re in smaller town it might be two or three years before 5G arrives.
For more on how Q can help you prepare for the 5G roll-out visit our products page or contact an adviser at firstname.lastname@example.org.