What’s so great about 5G anyway?

As with most technological advances these days, 5G is going to be here before we know it. But what exactly will this latest generation of wireless communication offer, and will it really be that different from 4G? We take a look to see what you can expect from the new G in town.

What exactly is 5G?

5G is the fifth generation of mobile internet connectivity, enabling faster and more stable uploading and downloading across wireless connections. In short, it will mean you’ll be able to do stuff on your mobile and tablet much, much faster than ever before.

When is it coming to the UK?

According to the government’s 5G strategy, the full UK rollout is expected to be in 2020 at the earliest. That said, EE recently announced that in 2019 it would be rolling 5G out to 16 cities across the country, including London, Cardiff, Edinburgh, and Birmingham.  

How fast will 5G be?

Well, very fast indeed. The top speed on paper for 4G is 1Gbps, but with 5G there is potential for speeds up to 20Gbps. Now, in the real world, it’s unlikely you’ll see those kinds of speeds. But, with tests showing average speeds of 3.4Gbps, it’s safe to say that 5G will be significantly faster than most home broadband connections.

Can I get 5G on my current phone or tablet?

Unfortunately, you will need a 5G-compatible device to take advantage of the network. There are none on sale yet in the UK but expect to see a number of them in the coming months.

How will it change my mobile usage?

Because your connection will be so much faster, it is likely that you’ll be using your mobile even more than with 4G. Download speeds will be significantly improved (you’ll be able to download a full movie in ten seconds), giving you the ability to get lots more content onto your device more quickly. 

Will it affect anything other than mobiles and tablets?

Yes, it will. The increased bandwidth will give extra space for other devices to use the network. So, connected home tech such as voice assistants, home hubs, and Internet-ready TVs will be able to jump straight onto your mobile plan rather than connecting to home broadband. In fact, many experts are suggesting that the advent of 5G will do away with the need for home broadband at all.

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