Breaking Down the Types of 5G

The term 5G stands for Fifth Generation. The wireless industry adopted the standards for 5G in 2017. Since that time, the major cell carriers and cell phone manufacturers have been developing the infrastructure and the products that can support 5G.

However, the appeal of 5G is much more than just cell phones. This is because it offers significantly more bandwidth for more devices and will allow for upload and download speeds that are 100 times faster, all with less latency and more reliable than the current 4G LTE.

In today’s post, I will explain how 5G includes multiple types of technology and how the different forms of 5G fit into today’s Internet of Things (IoT).

Types of 5G

Millimeter Waves (MMV) “High-Band” Spectrum. When the term 5G is being used, this is what most people think it means. This is the technology that will bring blazing upload and download speeds to our phones. It will also have low latency or no lag, which means there will be very little delay with sending or receiving information. This brings the promises of self-driving cars/fleets, smart cities, remote surgical procedures, and other applications that can replace real-time interactions.

“Low-Band” Spectrum 5G. When T-Mobile stakes the claim that they have the first nationwide 5G network, this is the technology that they are referring to. It essentially takes airwaves like the ones used for LTE and bundles them together with some new technology to deliver faster speeds. This Low-Band 5G is using a 600MHz frequency. Unlike the “High Band” MMV Spectrum, which claims to have speeds 100 times faster than LTE, this Low-Band 5G is only showing increases of around 20%.

“Mid-Band” Spectrum 5G. Mid-Band provides faster speeds and lower latency than Low-Band. It does, however, fail to penetrate buildings as effectively as the low-band spectrum. Currently, Sprint has the majority of the unused Mid-Band spectrum. At this time, Sprint is working on bringing this technology to market.

NB-IoT and LTE-M "Narrow-Band." The acronyms stand for Narrow-Band Internet of Things LTE-Machine Type Communication. This 5G technology is a type of low power wide area network (LPWAN) radio technology to enable a wide range of cellular devices and services specifically for machine-to-machine and the Internet of Things.

5G and the Future

In much of the new 5G technology, there is either a need to wait until the network infrastructure is built out of a need to purchase new phones to utilize this new technology. In regard to NB-IoT and LTE-M 5G, both AT&T and Verizon have the network infrastructure already completed.

For example, OptConnect mylo utilizes this current 5G Cat M1 technology and is also built to be dual-carrier so that if one network is struggling, it automatically switches to the other carrier and has better building penetration. To learn more about OptConnect's new 5G router, mylo, please visit

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