What is 5G Internet? Why should you care?December 4, 2018
I’m going to go out on a limb and say that most people own a Mobile Phone with a cellular network on it? and 90% of those people have no Idea how it works, they just know it does. Right now most modern phones support a 4G network in certain areas, this gets the job done for the type of media consumption and data-intensive apps we use daily but doesn’t compare to the wired connection we have in our homes. Did you know that an upgrade to 4G is right around the corner? 5G will drastically increase our capabilities wirelessly for business and personal use. In today’s article I will be answering the question, What is 5G Internet? and why should you care?
We all should know how mobile networks work, if you don’t, the quickest and easiest explanation is, Mobile Phones use cell data transmitted too and from cell towers scattered throughout whichever country you are from. This gives you internet access as long as you are within your carrier’s coverage.
Before we can fully understand 5G we need to understand where we come from and how did we get here. The G stands for generation and technically there are 4 generations of mobile communication network prior to 5G.
1G was the first commercial generation of cellular network, it was launched in Japan in 1979 and within 5 years it had expanded to the entire population of Japan. By mid-1980s Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden, USA, UK, Mexico, and Canada had adopted the technology. It was also the introduction of International Roaming.
The biggest difference between 1G and 2G is that 1G was is an Analog signal and 2G is a Digital signal. A few major benefits of a digital signal include the introduction of data services for mobile, SMS text messages, picture messages, and MMS, and a digital signal is better at penetrating structures than analog.
In 1998 3G was introduced, it offers a much higher data transfer speed than 2G. Initially, Minimum speed was 0.2 Mbps and some networks provided a max speed of up to 7 Mbps, these figures were improved throughout the life cycle of 3G. With the increase in speed and bandwidth, we were able to use features not available before on a mobile like Global Positioning System (GPS), Video Conferencing, Video on demand and Location-based services. By June 2007 200 million people were using 3G.
In 2009 the first 4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) was made commercially available, this saw a drastic increase in speed. In theory 4G should be able to achieve 100 Mbps while in motion and 1Gbps while stationary, In reality, speeds vary carrier to carrier, 5 Mbps to 12 Mbps can be achieved pretty consistently. This speed increase allows for HD mobile streaming, 3D TV, Gaming Services to name a few.
What is 5G Internet?
Around every 10 years, we see an evolution of our cellular network, like all technology it is forever evolving. This is due to an increase in user demand and interest in pushing past our limits. We have come from only barely been able to send a text/SMS to being able to stream HD video on YouTube and Netflix.
5G is expected to be rolled out and commercially available by March 2020, theoretically we should be able to reach speeds of up to 20 Gbps but in reality, expect around 1 Gbps. Like previous generations, max speed usually can only be achieved in an ideal testing environment, a user experience anywhere near 1 Gbps will obliterate anything offered by 4G.
Not only will we be able to watch 4K video on the go and game wirelessly with ultra-low latency, but 5G will also help push a few different sectors, Health Care, Production Lines, and Energy. What I’m most excited about is 5G internet for the home, I currently run a 4G wireless modem in my home due to our areas wired internet being unbearably slow. I live in Australia and our wired internet across the board is terrible, we are ranked 55th in the world when it comes to internet speed, mostly due to our poor telecommunications infrastructure and broadband still being rolled out across the country. 5G internet, in theory, will provide better performance than the average broadband service in Australia, I for one am very excited.
In 2 years mobile networks will be 40 years old and the World Wide Web as we know it will be 30 years old when you think about it, that is fairly new technology. We rely on wireless and fixed internet every single day, I for one am happy that telecommunication networks are forever evolving, not only does it give you more flexibility, it allows more advanced capabilities and pushes industries forward. 5G will change the way we do things on the go and in our homes.
I get really excited by future tech!! What tech are you looking forward to in the future? Comment below and let me know.