Samsung will likely be the first phone to debut the fifth generation of connectivity and Apple will be sure to follow. It’s looking like we’ll be seeing this new change at the end of 2018. As of now, software is in the works, hardware is being testing and carriers are preparing for the new plans that will take the 5G phones into market and into action. This new connectivity will not just be about faster phones, but the ability for users to experience augmented and virtual reality, connected cars and smart homes. We’re going to see a number of scenarios when 5G starts – smaller cities may only have 5G in, for example, a convention center. But larger cities like NY and LA will have more coverage overall.
What should we expect?
5G is going to be fast. The team over at AT&T did some tests and found that you can download a 100GB 4K move in only 2.5 minutes. 5G has achieved speeds of up to 6 Gbps.
4G LTE has a ton of coverage and 5G isn’t looking like it will work the same way. It may even feel a bit like a Wi-Fi network. Usually our service comes from tall cell towers, but 5G transmitters are going to be closer to the ground. To make this work, you need to have a lot ground coverage hardware to make sure there are reliable signals. The 5G high frequencies also come with low wavelengths, so there will be some frustration in connectivity through walls and windows. It’s going to be tricky.
“If you look at a top-down map of Manhattan, you’ll see that the avenues generally have no trees, unlike the streets. If a carrier were to deploy 5G there, you’d probably get worse reception in the streets.” Jason Elliot
Home Before Cell
Fixed wireless is going to be a quicker task than cell phones will be. Over the past year, AT&T and Verizon have already been testing 5G wireless in small markets. Executives at both companies mentioned that this will not replace wired home broadband networks, but rather complement it.
Connected cars are in the works, where consumers will purchase a 5G vehicle subscriptions. Will we see self-driving cars that will exchange information, data and content over the network? We should also keep an eye out for advances in VR/video as well as IoT coming into play.
“With 5G, we’ll see computing capabilities getting fused with communications everywhere, so trillions of things like wearable devices don’t have to worry about computing power because network can do any processing needed.” Asha Keddy
Rumor has it, the network will roll out at the end of this year.
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