Comparing 5G Speeds To 4G Speeds: How Fast Is It, Really?
Posted by Greg Knell on 10th Jun 2020
Quick Summary of How Much Faster Is 5G Than 4G? (The Real Truth):
- How Much Faster is 5G Than 4G, Really?
- VR Gaming
- Autonomous Cars
- Automated Factories
- Smart Appliances, Homes, and Cities
- Revolutionary Health Care
- ”Super” Video Conferencing
- Smart Economy
It’s faster. A LOT faster.
How much faster? Let’s talk about how fast fully-functioning 5G is expected to be. We’ll explain it in a literal sense first so you have a grasp on the numbers. After that, we’ll go through some real-world applications to give you a broader scope of how 5G will affect your life. More than likely, some of the things we talk about here you haven’t thought of. So, how much faster is 5G than 4G?
Let’s get into into it.
But Before We Get Into It…
We’ve already gone into the nitty-gritty on how 5G technology works in previous articles. So we won’t be diving into those details here. Here are links to some of those pages for your 5G reading pleasure.
5G FAQs (3 Common Questions Answered)
The Ultimate Guide To T-Mobile 5G (Coverage, Phones, and More)
7 Reasons Why You Should Be Excited About 5G Cell Tower Networks
5G vs 4G Differences: 2019 Guide on 5G mmWave Technology
Also, there is one exciting thing we should make clear. 5G is not a technology centered on phones. It’s a technology that’s centered on everything. Literally.
LiveTiles has a great infographic showing the 'potential, the positives and the pitfalls' of a 5G world
How Much Faster is 5G Than 4G, Really?
Right now, most of the connected world is used to 4G. And 4G is great. Our download speeds are faster than they’ve ever been before. Latency is largely acceptable and more than tolerable for most tasks and applications. The advent of 4G was itself a game changer in many ways.
But when put up against the expected average speeds of 5G, 4G wains in comparison. Take the nation’s fastest network, Verizon. It currently averages 4G speeds of 53.3 Mbps. But Verizon’s average 5G speeds will be between 713 Mbps and 1.07 Gbps! That’s well over 10 times faster! AT&T and T-Mobile are expected to have a similar jump.
Let’s take the explanation further with a simple example. In some areas, the first stages of 5G have already been rolled out. It’s reported that even at this beginning stage, it only takes around 50 seconds on average to download a 2-hour movie. Think about it this way. All the latency-ridden mobile tasks you’re used to doing on 4G will happen in the blink of eye on 5G. This also means that in areas that are usually slow or congested, connectivity will be reliable. Better than reliable.
Now, let’s talk about some of the specific aspects of our world that will most definitely be influenced by it. How much faster is 5G than 4G? Here are some tangible examples to help paint a clearer picture.
If you’re a gamer, you know how important latency is to success. Even the slightest lag in connection can mean failure. But, truthfully, gaming tech has moved forward considerably in only the last decade. Graphics, interactive gameplay, and latency are impressive even now. Well, if you think the current gaming technology is amazing, just wait for what 5G has in store for this industry.
The lightning-fast data transfer capabilities of 5G will truly open the doors to VR (virtual reality). Gamers have been anticipating for a long time what truly effective VR will allow them to experience. And 5G will most definitely allow it. The potential of a virtual reality headset with this tech is boundless. Two people playing on opposite sides of the planet will keep up with each other with zero latency. And that’s a benefit on the low-end of what’s possible.
Even Mark Zuckerberg said he considers virtual reality to be a “killer application” of 5G.
We’re already familiar with the concept of smart cars, but 5G will take it to whole other level.
Autonomous features in our vehicles that are connected to the internet will get an enormous boost with 5G. And it’s probably safe to assume that our roads and highways will eventually have sensors and nodes as well. 5G will allow all of these things to communicate with each other in real-time. This will lead to enhanced road safety, a more effective transportation network, and an overall safer driving experience. Not to mention things like being able to stream movies to passengers and anything else that would be a convenient result of 5G-connected cars.
Self-driving cars are certainly not that far off.
Manufacturing at all levels will undoubtedly be improved with the extremely low latency of 5G. Reliability, productivity, safety, and repeatability improvements in virtually every industry will take place. This technology will bring us closer to a fully automated factory than ever before. Not to mentioned enormous fuel improvements, equipment improvements, lower costs, and heightened efficiency.
Large networks of wireless sensors will result in:
- highly accurate predictive maintenance
- extremely low downtimes
- functioning robotics operating in real time
- product quality and flow rates monitored with precision
- all manner of remote control
- better inventory tracking from assembly to purchase and beyond
- logistics management
- heightened customer experience
Buildings could be managed remotely in real time. Smart sensors incorporated throughout the structure could allow managers all sorts of high-efficiency tasks. Things like security, lighting, air quality, humidity, temperature, cleaning could be masterfully tracked and regulated. The amount of energy saved alone would be amazing. Productivity and safety would be maximized.
Smart Appliances, Homes, and Cities
Though the advent of the smart home has already taken place, 5G will make it even better. Appliances like refrigerators, thermostats, TVs, home security systems, garage doors, and everything else you can think of will all be connected and communicating with each other in real time via the internet. And not just any internet. A 5G connection. Your house will know what you want before you want it because it will know you and your habits so well.
Notifying you of what’s running low in the fridge, or when your air filter needs to be replaced, or if you’ve left the oven on. Fully integrated and customizable. Everything from day-to-day conveniences to notifications of preventative maintenance needs.
Again, the low latency of 5G (you see the pattern) will pave the way for things like traffic lights, public transportation, and highways to become smart. An AI-fueled infrastructure, real-time computing, and big data analytics will all come together. Consider how:
- energy will be saved
- city management will become more efficient
- utility maintenance will be perfectly timed
- citywide logistics will be streamlined
Revolutionary Health Care
The implementation of 5G in the health care industry is really exciting. What if doctors could perform certain procurers remotely? A specialist thousands of miles away could operate on a patient via robots. With resources like this, the best doctors in world could be available to anyone anywhere.
Holographic overlays on a patient could assist surgeons through procedures. Surgeons could perform procedures in real time with augmented reality like this. Errors across all medical professions would be reduced, improving post-surgical outcomes across the board.
Augmented reality in tandem with 5G speeds could allow medical students and doctors to learn procedures more effectively. Who knows, maybe eventually surgeons and doctors won't even need to be present in the operating room to perform surgeries.
What if a physical therapy patient and a therapist could work through motor skills exercises with the help of a VR headset? This could be extremely useful when one party can’t be there in person for rehab. Or if the specialist you’d like to work with lives far away. The socioeconomic barriers that could be broken with technology like this are great.
And we haven’t even mentioned all of the incredible data analytics potential the 5G will bring to this industry and beyond. All of this might seem crazy now. But big possibilities like these make it so exciting.
”Super” Video Conferencing
Apps like Zoom, FaceTime, and Skype are familiar to us. And we all know the frustration associated with lags, timeouts, and bad connections. A lot of the time, getting through one of these video calls can be a slog. But what would 5G do to software like this?
You could have a band rehearsal with video and sound so clear and crisp that it would be like you were all in the same room playing together. A family video call with ultra-fast speeds and super-low latency would be like you were all really in your living room talking.
This hyper-quality video conferencing would take working remotely to another level. Business owners could easily meet with employees and clients as if everyone was truly in the office conference room.
Speeds this fast could incorporate these “super” video calls with 3D visualization and augmented reality in amazing ways for businesses. An architect, for example, could turn his blueprints into a high-definition virtual walkthrough. He could see and interact with his building design before breaking ground. Perhaps archeologists could create a holographic simulation of an ancient site. This way we could all experience it in a fully immersive digital environment.
These capabilities would undoubtedly lead to all sorts of advancements in product design and customer experience throughout the marketplace.
If 5G makes it feasible for almost anything to become “smart”, money will most certainly become smarter, as well. There are already mobile payment options through apps and software that don’t require physical cash. But full-force 5G will make possible much more than fast, cashless transactions.
It’s likely that 5G will really get the self-serve economy rolling. Combining smart money, authenticated ID, and smart objects with high-speed, real-time digital communication will be a game-changer. Traditional sales channels would be eliminated. All of the basic, time-consuming mechanics of transactions in the marketplace would go by the wayside. This would give way to a more responsive and intelligent customer relationship. Preferences and behaviors would be more accurately predicted. Businesses could be much more proactive and efficient under these circumstances.
How Much Faster Is 5G Than 4G? (The Real Truth) - Conclusion
Andy Sherrard, chief marketing officer of T-Mobile, had this to say about 5G:
<code>“5G will be the equivalent of what the browser did for the internet. I really think it is going to explode with IoT (internet of things) and all kinds of other things and innovation we haven't even imagined yet. When you get people out there working on new tech, and creating new content and integrating it into our lives in new ways, I feel we're all going to be surprised by it."
How much faster is 5G than 4G? So much faster than experts expect it to change everything. Our way of life in almost every facet will be affected by the unbelievable data speeds. Convenience, innovation, and progress are in store for all of us. It’s exciting to think about what will be possible, what ideas and implementations will come about as a result of 5G.