The Benefits of 5G Wireless

In 2019, commercial 5G wireless was launched, and mobile network operators (MNOs) have been working since then to expand 5G coverage. It has been accompanied by a level of buzz that is highly warranted, given its promise of improved networking capabilities.

Defining 5G: The 5G New Radio specification is a release of the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP). What matters to your business is that it delivers speeds faster than that of its predecessor, 4G wireless. Actual speeds are dependent on the frequency a particular technology utilizes, such as high-band, low-band, or mid-band.

5G used with high-band can offer data speeds up to 1 Gbps if it is outdoors and within a 1,000-foot range of a mobile 5G mmWave base station, which allows it to receive mobile coverage.

While carriers largely offer mid-band spectrum, with a range of 1.7 GHz to 4.7 GHz resulting in download speeds exceeding 100 Mbps and a signal range of a few miles, the three dominant MNOs in the United States offer low-band 5G in order to cover large areas. This results in speeds around 50 Mbps, but low-band range is still much faster than the 20 Mbps offered in 4G LTE.

5G wireless also enables a low level of latency. The length of time for a packet of data to arrive at a destination is around 70 milliseconds with 4G LTE, but with 5G it improves to around 10 to 20 milliseconds.

What 5G Means to You: The Types of Network Services

Currently, there are two types of 5G services available through MNOs. Here’s a quick description of fixed wireless access and mobile 5G and how they each operate.

Fixed Wireless Access (FWA): Designed to deliver last-mile connectivity for a business or home with radio signals, FWA broadband is the alternative to a wired connection to the property. It is deployed using small cell sites or base stations in telephone poles or streetlights. It replaces the need for cable, fiber or other wired connections, delivering signals within buildings.

5G Mobile: In 2019, MNOs were initially deploying mobile 5G, but those MNOs located in Europe, Asia, and North America are only getting started rolling out nationwide mobile 5G coverage. The result is a wide variation of data speeds, depending on the level of frequency the mobile 5G supports.

Now that 5G for commercial private networking is expanding, the full potential for 5G wireless is becoming more of a reality. Companies are investing in RAN hardware with 5G software that will operate on its designated frequency. One of the harder steps to the implementation of 5G wireless is gaining access to the radio spectrum.

As 5G wireless becomes more widespread, your company may be making plans to reap its benefits. Contact us at One Connect for assistance in leveraging the right infrastructure and tools to support your transition to 5G.