Now that 5G has been launched by each of the major mobile network providers, what does it all mean? Is 5G just the latest fad and just an excuse to get people and businesses to upgrade their devices and sign up to new contracts?
Having spoken to several customers and with each of the major networks we felt it was important to prepare this short FAQ About 5G In The UK to answer some of the questions we are being asked.
We therefore hope you find this Frequently Asked Questions About 5G useful, however, if you still have questions or you would like to find out more about what's on offer, please do not hesitate to get in touch.
1. What Is 5G?
5G is the fifth generation of mobile technology and promises to bring a revolution in how smart devices and buildings will be able to communicate with one another. To find out even more about what 5G means in the UK, please read our recent blog on What 5G Is All About.
2. What Are The Benefits Of 5G?
Whilst everyone is talking about the huge increases in speed with 5G, it is also important to note that 5G promises a lot higher capacities along with much lower latencies (the time lag involved when devices connect and data is transferred). At first glance this may not mean much, however, it is said that the low latencies involved with 5G will allow IoT (internet of things) technology to take off and make 5G the era of Smart Technologies. This is tipped to enable a step change with technologies such as healthcare, driverless cars, smart buildings and augmented reality. Read more about the benefits of 5G for your business here.
3. Do You Really Need 5G?
It is difficult to say if every person and business actually needs 5G as it will depend on their own individial use case. The benefits of 5G are real, however, with faster upload and download speeds allowing much easier mobile working and less time waiting for documents or files to arrive. What is interesting though is that the higher capacities that 5G allows has spurred providers such as Vodafone to introduce new pricing plans with Unlimited Data. For businesses with heavy data usage this could offer significant benefits. Follow the link to find out more about Vodafone's Business Unlimited tariffs.
4. How Fast Is 5G Really?
5G essentially means that this is now the fifth generation of the technology which underpins the UK's mobile connectivity. It therefore promises to bring additional benefits over the existing 4G network. With 4G averaging speeds of only 23Mbps to 35Mbps and a maximum of 150Mbps, 5G will average between 150Mbps and 200Mbps and should be able to achieve a maximum of 1Gbps. OFCOM has even suggested that in time 5G could actually deliver up to 20Gbps.
5. How Long Will It Take To Get 5G?
The good news is that all the major mobile providers in the UK have started to roll out 5G.
- Vodafone 5G is currently available in more places with 15 UK cities live with 7 more later this year. Vodafone is also offering 5G roaming in 47 cities across Europe including Spain, Italy and Germany.
- EE was the first to begin rolling out 5G in the UK and is now live in 9 UK cities with 26 due to be rolled out in 2019/20.
- O2 has launched in 6 UK cities (London, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Belfast, Slough & Leeds) with 20 more promised by the end of the year and 50 by next Summer.
- 3 is currently available in parts of London and due to roll out to 25 cities soon.
6. Will You Need A New Phone?
The bad news is that current handsets will not support 5G. This means that if you live in a 5G enabled area and you want to avail of the benefits which 5G promises you will need to get a 5G enabled handset. No Apple phone currently offers 5G capabilities and it could be late 2020 before the next generation of iPhones ship with 5G technology.
At this moment in time there are only 8 mobile handsets offering 5G in the UK from Samsung, OnePlus, LG, Huawei, Xiaomi and Oppo, although this number is likely to change on a regular basis. The good news from Vodafone, however, is that even if you can't get 5G in your area or you don't have a 5G enabled handset, their Unlimited 5G plans are still offering unlimited data no matter where you are located. You will just carry on with 4G until the 5G network arrives and/ or you upgrade your handset. Find out more...
We hope you have found these Frequently Asked Questions About 5G In The UK useful. 5G promises to be a real game changer so it is important that business owners know what is possible and what they need to consider before making any decisions. Things are changing on a regular basis with lots of new towns and cities coming on stream and more and more handsets arriving with support for 5G. At Connect Total we recognise that it can be quite confusing trying to stay on top of everything and are therefore offering completely free advice to any UK business considering 5G. To get in touch, please click the link below to find out more...