What is 5G and When Can we Expect it?
It seemed like yesterday when our smartphones were able to use 4G, and now we already know that the new 5G network is coming. In case you haven’t noticed much difference between 3G and 4G, you will certainly have a different experience with the new system. As the news from the industry says, there will be some significant divergence in the new 5G technology. 5G brings the new way of connectivity, and the entire world seems pretty excited about it. So, let’s see what exactly will 5G change in our lives?
What does the ‘G’ stand for?
Whether we are talking about 1G, 2G, 3G, 4G or 5G, the ‘G’ stands for wireless connection. Just to remind you, 1G has an analog cellular connection, 2G made a huge impact since it was the first digital cellular connection (CDMA, TDMA, and GSM). 3G was very popular because it was the first time that the speed was measured in a few Mbps (megabits per second) instead of Kbps (kilobits per second). The latest, 4G (LTE and WiMAX), the most progressive system with the speed of hundreds of Mbps.
What is 5G?
5G is a high-speed and capacity network system that has lower latency than other network systems. With such system, you can upload and download data faster than you could do that with earlier systems. 5G or the fifth generation wireless system supports operations in the 28 GHz band, also known as millimeter wave (mmW) spectrum. It also has 800 MHz bandwidth support, which means that it’s designed to support peak download speeds of up to 35.46 gigabits per second. Pretty impressive isn’t it?
Simply put, 5G is expected to have higher speed level and capacity per sector while providing with lower latency than 4G.
If you wonder who created 5G, the answer is chipmakers in general, who are working in companies such as AT&T, Verizon Wireless, and Qualcomm. At the moment Qualcomm has made the biggest progress in this field. Engineers in this company created a modem Snapdragon X20, which should be available on the market really soon (sometime in the first half in 2017). It should support the speed of 1,2 Gbps.
What are the most important specs of 5G?
Let’s see what features are 5G bringing to us:
1. The speed. As we mentioned, 5G could run up to 35.46GB per second, but this is the result from the lab. No one can tell for sure how fast it will be in the real-world conditions once it’s released. As you probably know, numerous factors can affect the speed, such as a thick wall, poor network coverage, interruptions from other sources, etc. The great news is that big smartphone manufacturer companies are currently testing this technology to see how far can it go.
2. Latency or in other words, the time that passes between the period when you clicked ‘Download’ and the moment when your phone actually started downloading it. To lower the latency 5g uses OFDM (orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing) encoding. The feature that makes OFDM different from LTE ( the standard used by 4G) is flexibility. This feature is especially important to gamers. There is not going to be any delays when they press a button on the keyboard and the actual game receiving the command. Current tests show that for the speed of 20 Gbps the latency is going to be only 1ms.
3. 5G works with smaller cells and devices. We have to thank the frequency 5G uses and predicted network capacity. This means that you can use it for the home router, as well. Or in other words, 5G will have an enormous impact on the application of IoT (Internet of Things) and it will enable this new technology to be an integral part of our lives.
4. Longer battery life of each device you connect to 5G. It is predicted that devices’ power is going to last about 10 times longer because of the characteristics of the system.
When will 5G be available?
We will probably have to wait for 5G until 2020. However, South Korea wishes to deploy a trial 5G in 2018, just in time for the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, while the Japan wants to have 5G prepared for 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. These trials will certainly speed things up.
On the other hand, to get things going faster, Verizon partnered with Nokia, Ericsson, Samsung, Cisco and Qualcomm to work on the Verizon 5G Technical Forum. With development centers in Waltham, San Francisco, and Massachusetts, the Forum’s primary job is to test the new technology and create some applications to that will demonstrate the power of 5G.
5G will change the world
As Trusted Reviews mentioned, there is a believe that the 5G is going to create a $12 trillion dollars worth of value. stated: ‘The future is going to bring more stuff that I can’t really describe.” Gurnani thinks that 5G can bring new tech revolution to the world. Ben Timmons, Senior Director, Business Development of Qualcomm Europe has a similar opinion. He stated that the 5G is going to impact the market even more than 3G did.
We trust them, and we can’t wait to see all the new and exciting ways that our future will be shaped with 5G.
Images from: Wikipedia, The Register, CBR Online