Our cell phone carriers provide 4G data networks for our phones and tablets, but its successor is coming to us soon. 5G, which stands for Fifth – Generation Mobile network or Wireless Systems. It is an upgrade from its 4G brethren.

What new features can we expect?

It is extremely fast and can handle many more devices. 5G is revolutionary because it will be the first time that devices will be able to talk to one another on the network. Currently, the 4G network is a one-dimensional network in the sense of the network communicates with your phone, the user interacts with their phone then it sends information back to the network. 5G will allow devices to communicate quicker to one another. The new network has the potential to be almost 100 times faster then 4G; with speeds that could reach up to 10GB a second.

Data network comparison chart. Source: CNet

5G will also be beneficial because it will increase bandwidth. This is crucial because it will be able to sustain more devices. With smart home technology on the rise, it will help eliminate the slow down of an overcrowded network. There will also be a huge reduction in communication lag time or latency. This leap will help push other technologies forward. Self-driving cars will need that speed to ping one another multiple times a second to avoid accidents. Doctors will also be able to perform complex operations remotely.

How is it going to work?

All of these advancements are going to be accomplished by tapping into the existing towers, using both the mobile spectrum and a higher frequency that can carry a significant increase in data but can’t travel as far. As a result, you may be seeing hubs that will help broadcast the network in areas that offer 5G. 5G is expected to cost providers an estimated $275 billion over the next seven years to upgrade and the service should become available sometime in 2019.

Cover photo credit: Kaspersky.com

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