We saw angry people attacking 5g towers the last few months. They said it was the source of Covid-19, or they had other medical concerns. And it’s true that little has been investigated yet, as 5G is relatively new. On the other hand 5G is very similar to the previous mobile generations. A lot has been investigated around 3g and 4g and the radiation is well among limits for harming people. You really need to hug the poles for a very long time will it do you any harm.
The few towers that have been demolished got a lot of attention. What is less known that telecom providers build thousands of them every week. For example in my own country, the Netherlands, KPN installs around 500 towers a week. From the 28th of July a few big cities can use 5G for the first time. It’s expected that there is national coverage at the end of next year.
During my summer vacation I still had to deal with 4G. This worked effortlessly. I started wondering: when 5G will be even faster what will change? Is it just another generation or does it push away other technologies?
What brings the fifth generation?
5G is of course the next generation that follows 4G. It will be the next global telecommunication standard. It focuses on:
- Higher bandwidth/Network capacity
- Faster data rates (500% faster than 4G)
- Lower latency
- Better Reliability
Technically this is achieved by using three frequencies bands (low, medium and high). This will (eventually) lead to speeds up to 10 Gbit/s. Currently, 1.8 Gbit/s is the fastest 5G deployment. 5G can support up to a million devices per square kilometer, while 4G supports only up to 100,000 devices per square kilometer. This is all laid down in the IMT-2020 standard.
Who will be the victim of 5G?
The performance of 5G made me think. Hey, that’s faster than my current internet connection! Already during vacation I noticed that I didn’t switch to Wi-Fi of hotels anymore, like I did with 3G. If 5G is even faster, will I do the same with my Wi-Fi at home?
This reminded me about around twenty years ago when I got my first mobile phone. Since then, I never felt I need a landline telephone anymore. More and more people over the years ditched their landline and used their mobile subscription only (except for my parents).
Can I use my 5G smartphone as one big hotspot for all my devices at home? This would mean I can ditch my current internet subscription. No router in the fuse box anymore. My television, headset, home automation, tablets and notebooks and all other devices will use internet through 5G.
When more and more users use 5G then hotels, museums and companies will not need to offer internet through Wi-Fi anymore. So will Wi-Fi be the real victim of 5G?