5G, the fifth generation of cellular mobile communication, is witnessing an increase in adoption during the end of 2018. The technology is expected to be in wide use by the first half of 2019 in certain countries across the world. Many telecom giants like Sprint, Verizon and AT&T have started to roll out 5G, mainly in experimental phase. AT&T has launched its 5G network in 12 US cities, including Atlanta and New Orleans.
In December 2018, Qualcomm announced Snapdragon 855, its high-end smartphone processor which supports 5G. In November 2018, Nokia planned to merge its mobile and wired network groups into a single Access Networks team for exploiting the potential of 5G.
5G offers several benefits over the previous cellular mobile generations like 4G and 3G. One major difference is the 20 Gb/s peak data rate and reduced latency (latency is the lag in time from between data sent and received). 5G also enables more devices and users to be connected/communicated at the same time compared to 4G. Apart from smartphones, areas like IoT will be highly benefited with the data transfer speed of 5G.
Though 5G has several benefits some of the disadvantages acts as a hindrance to the adoption of 5G in 2019. One of the major reasons is that a huge number of smartphones in the market currently does not support 5G. 5G supported smartphones will be the high-end smartphones expected to be released in 2019. Another major issue is the cost of 5G implementation. Upgrading current cell towers and installing new ones which could deal with 5G’s higher-speed and shorter-range technology could take a huge amount of time. Also, 5G enabling will make smartphone cost higher which would restrain budget oriented smartphones from adopting it. However, the technology is expected to overcome these challenges and enter the market in full scale in the future.
– Arjun Das,
Senior Research Analyst,