5G (acronym of 5th Generation) indicates the set of fifth-generation mobile telephony technologies, which allow much higher performance and speed than current 4G technology. 5G technology officially arrived in 2019 and allowed millions of devices to connect worldwide at high speed and with low latency. It also allows the realization of advanced projects such as connected cars, the Internet of Things, Smart Cities and Smart Home of the new generation.
What does 5G mean?
Simply, it is the abbreviation of the 5th generation or fifth generation. Indeed, it is precisely the fifth stage of mobile networks, the direct successor of 4G LTE, the currently most widespread standard.
How 5G works?
Like other mobile connections, 5G will also use terrestrial networks. The latter divides the territory into various sectors, called cells, connected to a network backbone to send and receive data packets. The 5G will need to operate both below and above the 6 GHz frequency. For the lower frequencies, the same spectrum as the 4G LTE will be used, obviously with more flexible communication protocols and able to guarantee greater speed and stability. However, the real 5G difference will be at higher frequencies. At these levels, we talk about the so-called millimeter waves. These, although they have a lower range and can be hindered by walls and various obstacles (however, we are already talking about small cells, or new antennas of lesser range, but installed more frequently in urban areas rich in obstacles and buildings), guarantee communication channels much wider and, therefore, higher speeds.
Features of 5G Technology
- Data transfer rate and processing at tens of Mbps, for thousands of devices at the same time.
- 1 Gigabit per second simultaneously to numerous users in the same physical place (for example workers in the same office).
- Hundreds of simultaneous connections for wireless sensor networks.
- Support and support for hundreds of thousands of wireless connections simultaneously.
- Better coverage and spectral efficiency compared to 4G.
- The ITU (International Telecommunication Union ), in charge of establishing communications standards, has also established that 5G technology will have to guarantee:
- Connection of 1 million devices per square kilometer
- 100 MHz band up to 1 GHz frequency
- Latency no higher than 4 Ms, to reduce it to 1 Ms (4G currently has a latency of 70-100 Ms).
The download connection speed of 5G technology is 20 GB per second while upload speed is 10 GB per second. The increase in connection speed, in fact, will also reflect on the quality of video calls and high-quality calls (HD). For example, if you had to upload images over the internet, you could definitely enjoy an increased speed. You can also upload music, videos or photos in just a few seconds without having to wait long. And the cost of these mobile networks will not be so high, as the aim is to make 5G accessible to a wide audience.
Uses and applications of 5G Technology
So, we've seen what 5G is and how exponentially the speed of mobile networks will increase. This, however, does not only mean that we will be able to navigate from smartphones and tablets at the speed of light, but it will have wide-ranging consequences, which will substantially change the way we live our home, our car, our city and so on.
One of the most important consequences will be the definitive development of the Internet of things, thanks to the increased connection speed and the possibility of permanently connecting tens of thousands of devices simultaneously; we will officially enter the era of the Internet of Things. Most of the devices and products sold (from technology, furniture, furnishings, cars, clothes, etc.) will be connected and communicating with each other.
Obviously, one of the first consequences of this consecration is a phenomenon that we are already experiencing quite intensely, namely the development of smart home and do-it-yourself home automation. Most of the objects and devices present in the home will be part of a completely connected and synergistic ecosystem, remaining permanently connected, with communications without any latency between the devices.
Smart city and smart car:
The spread of the IoT will lead to the birth of real smart cities, completely connected and able to offer and manage all the services offered in a more intelligent and obviously connected way. We talk about traffic control, security sensors, video surveillance, services, etc. So, smart roads that will be traveled by smart cars. These cars will increasingly be self-driving and able to interact independently with the city.
The IoT and the remote control of the devices, combined with the constant development of Artificial Intelligence, will bring unquestionable benefits also from the medical point of view, with important implications in the surgical field. For example, think of an emergency operation performed remotely by a doctor while the patient is still in an ambulance.
Surgical operations performed by a robot, among other things, have already been tested. However, the delay between the movements of the surgeon and those of the robot does not make them completely efficient. But with the almost non-existent latency of the 5G connection, this may soon change. As, among other things, other activities closely related to medicine and wellness: applications, remote medical advice, etc.
Gaming and entertainment
Of course, another context that is significantly affected by the new revolution will be gaming, which increasingly moving towards cloud is gaming. In other words, the possibility of playing wherever you are, perhaps on different devices, obviously connecting to the Internet. An example of this is Google Stadia, announced a few weeks ago by Big G: a connection and any smart device with a display will be enough to play your favorite video games.
3 Key questions about 5G Technology and its answers by the experts
Answer: No, even with growing 5G we will still have 4G for many years to come.
Probably the spread of 5G has started in a group of countries like the United States, South Korea, China, Pakistan, Japan, and India. However, we will not say goodbye to 4G so quickly.
The truth is that 5G was not born to replace 4G, unlike the 4G which was expected to replace 3G (but never happened). When the 5G is up and running, 4G and its multiple variants will still play a role in the network, especially for applications and use cases that require less bandwidth. This means that operators need to plan both today's 4G and tomorrow's 5G, as both will coexist and share the same network resources for the near future.
Answer: Yes, but not only! The higher download speeds are a big part of 5G and that's what most people are most excited about, but equally important is the fact that 5G will offer up to 10 times less latency than 4G. It is this combination of high download speeds and reduced latency that opens up new use cases, such as augmented reality and virtual reality.
Soon, the very low latency that we will have with 5G will make it possible to communicate almost in real-time regardless of distance, making many new applications and use cases a reality. Some examples include autonomous cars, extreme real-time communications and ultra-reliable communications such as remote monitoring through machines.
Answer: There is a lot of talk about 5G standards, tests, and deployments, but in reality, the standards are still incomplete. The first standards focus on the 5G New Radios (NR), the part with which mobile devices communicate. With the first NR 5G specifications recently approved by 3GPP, it is expected that commercial offers will follow soon. The entire backend, which helps ensure end-to-end network performance, won't be ready for quite some time yet.
Even once all the standards have been completed, mobile network operators will probably take time to commercialize the technology, as they will want to run many tests and trials to minimize the risk before large-scale distribution occurs, and that makes perfect sense. This means that widely available end-to-end 5G network services based on standards are still at least a year or more away.
5G is the future of mobile phone technology, allowing greater connectivity, faster speed and lower latency at the same time. as when the 4G came out at the time it already meant a change in terms of mobile telephony and in turn the creation of new applications and services such as Instagram and Uber, taking the step from 4G to 5G could mean a new technological world of connectivity that still costs to describe. According to reports, in only 2025 there will already be 1.1 billion connections of the 5G type and only a few years later it could reach 1/3 of the world population. This is because there could be a drastic fall in prices, which will allow demand to grow.
Oct 25, 2019