YOU might have heard the term 5G being bandied about more and more lately and be wondering what it is? No, it is not, as the headline suggests, five thousand pounds, nor is it the latest GCSE subject or result. It is, in fact, the follow on to 4G in mobile phone terminology and quite simply stands for Fifth Generation as most of you know, probably, but just in case you didn't...
Anyway I have decided to do some research into the subject and would like to cover in this and following articles, if necessary, (the meanies at Business Times won't give me any more space) everything we need to know about 5G, from what it is, to how it works, when it will arrive and why you should care or not.
What is 5G and when will it arrive?
5G is short for 'fifth generation mobile networks'. And that's literally what it is - the fifth generation of mobile networks (with a mobile network being what is used to call, text and - when not connected to a wi-fi network - get online). But it's set to be far faster than previous generations, and unlike 4G it could open up new uses for mobile data.
A little background demonstrates the context of 5G. First-generation networks were introduced back in the 1980s - they were analogue and only carried voice. In the 90s, 2G (second generation) phones launched and they were digital, introducing new features like text and picture messaging. The Noughties brought 3G (third generation) which started to include video calling and mobile data. Ten years later came 4G, and these networks and phones were designed to support mobile internet and higher speeds for activities like video streaming and gaming. Now the networks are about to change again and 5G will be here soon.
But how soon is soon?
South Korea, China, Japan the US claim 5G will be here later this year or early next. The UK isn't set to begin until 2020, according to government's 5G strategy and statements from networks. Having said that, EE did announce in February 2018 that 5G could exist from late 2019.
OUT OF SPACE!
More 5G next month - In the UK - Trials and Tests - Benefits - Examples.
(Should be done by Christmas!)