What is 5G Capable of?

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. All of the carriers are advertising their 5G networks, however, not all 5G technology is the same.

In today’s post, we’ll take a look at the different types of 5G, use cases, and the benefits.

Types of 5G

Let’s take a look at how 5G includes multiple types of technology and how the different forms of 5G fit into today’s Internet of Things (IoT).

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 a 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 and has now merged with T-Mobile. At this time, T-Mobile 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.

Benefits of 5G

5G is a great opportunity for developers to deploy applications that take advantage of fast, high-speed lower latency networks. Like any data network, people want to know what the advantages are going to be of this new technology. So let’s take a look at the benefits of 5G.

Killer Speeds. If you are close enough to one of these 5G towers with your 5G phone, you will be able to download entire episodes of HD programs in a manner of seconds. Buffering when viewing a video will be a thing of the past.

Less Tower Congestion. With current 4G LTE technology, when thousands of people descend on a small area, towers tend to get congested and reach capacity. On 5G, this will no longer be an issue. This means that people won't feel like they are competing against each other for the tower using their cell phone on internet-based activities like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, sending/receiving email, web browsing, searching maps and directions, and reading news with all of the other users at crowded venues like sporting events, concerts, and festivals. With more bandwidth available, people will also be able to use this bandwidth to do more with their devices, making them more versatile than ever before.

New Technology Options. As network speeds have increased, more and more tasks are being transitioned from the world of computers to the world of smart devices. With the increasing network speeds, this could open new doors for smart device technology that may not have been available. We’re talking AI, VR, and much more.

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.

When 4G LTE first emerged, people were blown away by the speed and capabilities of such an advanced network. With 4G, LTE came more rich content, from video streaming to live gaming. Today the pros and cons of 5G are the next big thing on everyone's mind.

With a peak data rate of 20 Gbps, using eMBB (Enhanced Mobile Broadband), 5G will increase the bit rate, which increases speed and can also lower delays in content delivery to mobile devices. This will be especially helpful for applications that are bandwidth-intensive like VR (Virtual Reality), AR (Augmented Reality), and OTT (Over the Top Media Services).

At OptConnect, we are focused on keeping our customers up to date on the latest technologies. That is why we created OptConnect mylo. mylo utilizes this current 4G/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. For our customers that were previously worried about tower capacity issues at large events with their 4G LTE devices, our new mylo will no longer be prone to these types of carrier issues.

To learn more about OptConnect's new 5G router, mylo, please visit www.optconnect.com/mylo.

As 5G emerges, OptConnect will be providing those capabilities to our customers. Stay tuned and stay up to date with all things OptConnect by following us on social media.

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