What is 5G?
5G is simply the next numbered generation following 4G, which replaced the previous wireless communication technologies. Much like the generations before it, 5G aims to make mobile communication faster and more reliable as more and more devices go online.
Compared to the current 4G technology, 5Gg is an exponentially faster way to deliver internet traffic. For comparison, the average mobile download speed across the U.S. as reported by Speedtest.net in the first half of 2018 was around 27 Mbps — over 3.5 times slower than what’s expected from 5G.
The analyst firm Gartner estimates that by 2020 there will be over 26 billion connected devices (some even estimate this number to be closer to 100 billion). All of these devices will make up the Internet of Things (IoT), a giant network of connected “things” (including people). This network will be made up of connections between people and people, people and things, and things and things. As billions more devices connect to the web, the supporting infrastructure needs to support faster connections as well as far better handling of simultaneous connections while providing broader coverage for these devices. This is what 5G is all about.
What Will 5G Be Used For?
Contrary to what you would expect, 5G is not just about better mobile phone service. The key benefit of 5G is ultra-fast connections and minimal delays. Of course, 5G will still pave the way for smoother connectivity with our everyday devices, like when gaming, making video calls, streaming movies, downloading files, sharing HD and 4K media, receiving real-time traffic updates, etc.
The great wide open of 5G is around applications such as autonomous cars avoiding sudden collisions and understanding proper turn-by-turn directions, remotely operated hardware, and robotic systems that learn or abide by remote controllers such as surgeries where the doctor and patient are miles apart. These applications require a tremendous amount of bandwidth and need to communicate over the internet as quickly as possible to provide their intended effects. Any latency at all can drastically impact how real things feel in those environments.
Another big benefit of 5G is that it is so fast that it won’t just be available for mobile devices. It has the potential to replace your cable through fixed wireless access. Equipment is still being tested in the labs but engineers are testing customer based receivers that will surpass cable and fiber speeds without pulling any cable or digging any trenches.
When is it going to arrive?
The timeframe for 5G service availability depends not only on where you live but also which service providers are available in your area. There is a good possibility that North Americans will see 5G networks in test markets pop up as early as 2018, but it won’t take off until 2020. As with any new technology, actual delivery dates, coverage areas and capabilities will change over the next couple of years as we get closer to release. Check in with your provider’s website every so often to watch their roll out plans as they tighten up. Your telecom broker should also be up to date with what will be available in your area and what the providers will be offering.
Teledata Select offers a whole range of services that will help you meet your business goals. Starting with a complimentary review of your current telecommunication bills to identify errors and find opportunities for savings, better service and more functionality. We also offer project management for new service implementation and infrastructure installs, including fiber and low voltage cabling. Call us at 404-257-1502 to discuss your current Telecom Service Solution and what you would like to get out of it. Or send us a note via This Link to start a no obligation discussion of your specific business technology needs.
John Hagan is President of TeleData Select, a Telecommunications Consultant located in Atlanta, Ga serving customers throughout the US and overseas. His company provides business solutions for voice, data, mobile and cloud solutions for both large and small businesses. Contact John or their team for a complimentary telecom audit to make sure you’re getting the best value for communication services. The savings you receive could offset the cost of purchasing a new Hosted or Premise VoIP phone system.