What is 5G and How Will it Change the Way I Use the Internet?

April 4, 2020
Comment Chloe

Imagine being able to download an entire HD movie in under a second.

Imagine playing Fortnite with no lag.  

Imagine driving a car or flying a drone with a headset. 

After nearly a decade in the making, 5G is finally becoming an actuality. The new generation of wireless technology is almost here, and with it comes vast changes to the world as we know it. Read on to get the answer to your question- what is 5g?

what is 5g

What is 5G? 

5G is the next advancement in cellular technology, a catalyst for what Dr. Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, calls the Fourth Industrial Revolution—a technological environment including the Internet of Things (IoT), robotics, virtual reality (VR) and artificial intelligence (AI). This new development will impact technology in the following three ways: greater speed, greater responsiveness, and the ability to connect a lot more devices at once. 

Related: Benefits of Using WiFi Calling While Abroad

5G speed is almost incomprehensible. To illustrate, 4G averages around 100-200 ms in response time, which is slightly faster than human reaction time (200-300 ms). 5G’s response time is 1 ms. This means that we will be able to send and receive information in essentially real time, which paves the way for massive technological change in many industries. 

Some of the biggest changes ushered in by 5G involve virtual and augmented reality. Top ideas from leading developers include VR physical therapy and surgery, smart bandages that track your healing, and enabling parents to interact with babies in incubators. 

The Internet of Things (IoT), or the Internet connection between everyday objects that enables the sending and receiving of data, will also be significantly impacted by 5G. Already, smart city technologies like San Diego’s automatic lighting systems drastically decrease energy costs while South Bend, Indiana uses manhole cover sensors to redirect waterflow when sewer levels get too high. In the future, 5G could make automated seaports, drones, industrial robots, and self-driving cars possible. 

Now that you have the answer to your question- what is 5g, it is time to move forward and discover things a bit more.

How will 5G affect my Internet experience?

You’re probably wondering, how will this exciting, world-changing upgrade affect me? According to Sascha Segan of PCMag, 5G will eventually replace or supplement your 4G connection, promising much faster data download and upload speeds, wider coverage, and more stable and dependable connections. In short, you’ll be able to pay less for a faster connection. Under 5G, everything around us will connect to a network 100 times faster than our current connection and 10 times faster than our current home broadband. You could potentially control all the connected devices in your home—from your air conditioner to your washing machine. 5G will make our technological experience less expensive, power-consuming, and complicated.

Where do I sign up?

Currently, AT&T has launched 5G in 12 cities, Sprint in four, and Verizon in 13. The first rollout of 5G phones only support some of the 5G systems used in the U.S., so those who want the complete package of 5G coverage and speed will have to wait until approximately next spring.