You’ve heard the hype and now want to hope — is the super-cell service 5G really all that it’s cracked up to be? How do I make use of it?
Today, we’re going to lay it out for you, in a handy tiplist.
The anticipation is palpable — every so often in conversation someone will pick on the topic of cellphone service and how the next-gen technology, 5G will be a cure-all for dropped calls, endless download waits and sporadic service.
So here’s a primer that won’t leave you guessing.
Get a handle on 5G.
By now, everyone is familiar with 4G, introduced about a decade ago, which improved speeds over 3G. That was simple enough. Things are not so simple with 5G — which delivers incredibly faster speeds for all things you do on your phone. That’s a definition that’s as untechy as it gets. It has a hard time getting through troublesome barriers though and it’s likely that once you get it, you’ll see a toggling of speeds — meaning 5G sometimes, 4G at others.
But to anyone who hits a snag when accessing a website on her cellphone — those days will be gone.
It’s even faster than WiFi, in most cases.
Here’s what you can do with it.
Your day-to-day will get a lot easier, with less drops, and fewer interruptions. Internet-connected devices will experience noticeably less (if any) lag time. Automated devices will speak instantly to each other (think self-driving cars as they dodge each other).
Gamers rejoice! Good news for your kids. A big problem with games is that the more sophisticated they become, the more laggy and juterry. Those problems will be a thing of the past.
Sorry…you’ll need a new phone.
There’s no way to sugarcoat this — yes. And expect to pay a lot: Samsung’s Galaxy Note 10 will set you back $1,300. Apple’s next-gen iPhone, the 12, will have the technology, according to Business Insider, and will cost about $1,400.
Here’s what service will cost.
The projected cost? Not so bad, here. Expect about $10 per month more, according to the Times. An individual unlimited AT&T plan with 5G, for example, will cost about $75 per month.
Coming soon: Use it nationwide, even international.
It’s already here! Well, in limited markets. Back in 2019, Verizon and AT&T sparked up their 5G networks and a handful of phones that featured 5G were released, according to The New York Times.
For the rest of us, the biggest carriers, the same two, Verizon and AT&T, say expect nationwide availability this year.
The European Union is already rolling out 5G availability so expect a similar timetable to the United States. Of course, many less-developed nations will see a slower rollout, while super-high-tech countries like China (on track to have the highest availability in the world) Japan, and South Korea, are well underway, says the Times.