You’ll have heard a lot of things said in the press about 5G technology, and not all of them will have been good. As is often the case with technological advancements, the arrival of 5G has been greeted with a wave of conspiracy theories and suspicion, some of which would lead you to believe that the purpose of the technology is to kill us all. That is not, of course, the case. 5G is nothing more than a faster, more secure data connection, and one from which we could all potentially benefit.
While 5G won’t become available everywhere in the world at the same time, it will soon be switched on in a number of territories around the globe. Mobile phone companies are already getting ahead of the availability of the new service by selling 5G ready phones, and you might be asked if you’re interested in one the next time your contract is due for renewal, or the next time you need to purchase a new phone. Samsung has already started selling 5G phones. Apple is expected to make the next iPhone 5G compatible. 5G is no longer the future; it’s the present.
If you are offered a 5G phone the next time you’re in the market for a new handset, you’ll notice that the 5G-ready devices are significantly more expensive than 4G alternatives. That may lead you to ask yourself whether the upgrade is worth the cost. That’s a matter for you to decide, but we’re here to help you make that decision! Here are just a few good reasons you should consider stepping into the 5G era.
No More Network Outages
All of us have experienced the annoyance of not being able to make calls or use data due to network outages. They were endemic across the world earlier this year as masses of people started to work from home for the first time, and heightened demand was placed on phone networks. Service issues can also occur if there are lots of people in the same place, or lots of people trying to use the same service at the same time. This is why you’ll often struggle to get a good signal – or any signal at all – if you’re in a sports stadium with thousands of other people, or trying to make contact with your friends or family on New Year’s Eve.
This is far less likely to occur with 5G because of the higher frequency bands it uses. 4G is restricted to using low-frequency bands only, but 5G can operate across three whole different spectrum bands going all the way up to 300 GHz. 4G dies off at 6GHz. That’s a lot more space to work with, and so much less congestion. For the same reason, you’ll find your signal strength and call quality to improve dramatically.
Better Gaming Experiences
It took a while for the public to catch on to the idea of using phones as serious gaming platforms. We were all happy to play “Angry Birds” and “Candy Crush Saga,” and the gamblers among us were delighted to be able to play online slots like Joker Jewels slot and win money on the move, but something like an online slots website won’t put a heavy data demand on your phone. If you don’t have a strong enough data connection to access the average online slots website, chances are you don’t have a strong enough data connection to access anything at all. Now video game streaming platforms like Google Stadia have arrived, gamers need something that can cope with things that are far more demanding than online slots websites.
While a 4G connection can theoretically cope with the demands of streaming a full-scale video game in HD resolution without lag, lag is occasionally inevitable, as is connection dropoff and outages. To a gamer, that’s intolerable. Stadia and platforms like it weren’t built for the 4G era. They were made for the 5G age. If you play high-performance games that require an internet connection on your phone, 5G will (if you’ll excuse the pun) be a game-changer.
Every upgrade to the telecommunications network has resulted in an increase in data transfer speeds. We thought that 3G was fast until 4G arrived, and now it’s enormously frustrating when we’re stuck in an area where 3G connections are the fastest option available. Most people know and accept that 5G will be faster, but they might not know quite how much quicker it’s going to be.
With the best will in the world, the maximum speed a 4G connection can reach is three hundred megabytes per second. It’s unlikely that any device you’ve ever owned has reached that speed, but it’s theoretically possible. 5G can hit speeds of up to ten gigabytes per second. Again, most connections will never hit that speed, but even operating at a tenth of capacity that’s one gigabyte per second. You’ll be able to download movies in 4K in a matter of seconds. You’ll be able to transfer files in the blink of an eye. Buffering will be a thing of the past. You’ll never wait for a file to download again; you’ll just press the button, and it will arrive.
A 4G phone might be cheaper right now, but you’d be paying for technology that’s already at the point of obsolescence. It isn’t just connected to a slower network, but it’s also full of components designed to work with that network. All the better parts, from longer-lasting batteries to next-gen processors, are in the 5G phones. They have to be because of the demands that 5G connections place on them. Once you have a 5G phone, you’ll have a piece of technology that should, unless an accident happens, remain ‘current’ for the next decade. 5G’s arrival in 2020 comes ten years after 4G became the benchmark in 2010. Following that process along, it means that we probably won’t see 6G until 2030. It might cost you more right now, but when you factor in the future cost of buying a 5G device in a few years’ time anyway, it might be cheaper overall to swallow the price and get ahead of the curve.
5G will become the norm whether or not people are suspicious of it, and whether or not you buy a 5G-supporting device. You’re free to resist or ignore it if you wish, but the 5G revolution will happen anyway. If you’re on the fence about which way to go with your next phone purchase, we hope this article has given you a nudge in the right direction.