Taking a Closer Look at 5G
Since the beginning of 2021, the coverage of 5G has been extended to more than 75% of the country, with that number expected to rise to more than 80% by mid-year.
Of course, the quickest and easiest path to 5G is to build 5G networks on top of existing 4G platforms, meaning 4G and LTE networks will still be around as a fallback option for users and devices that don’t yet support 5G. But for the first time, 5G technology is capable of offering fiber-optic speeds to mobile devices.
Of course, as the world becomes more and more connected, underlying network infrastructure plays a big role in cellular connectivity. Cellular connections traverse back over existing fiber networks. Like 5G, these networks aren’t yet adequate enough for the growing number of devices, and they need expanding as well. For this reason, all of the major carriers are working on laying thousands of miles of fiber optics to help support 5G speeds.
By 2030, 5G is expected to serve nearly 2 billion people
To be able to fully deliver on the promise of a significant performance increase with 5G, the carriers have a lot of work ahead of them. More and more people are using multiple devices — it’s not simply about a phone anymore. Some of these things include:
- Automated vehicles
- Artificial intelligence devices
- Virtual and augmented reality devices
- Telemedicine devices
Delivering on the promise of a 5G network that offers extensive coverage and delivers the bandwidth and latency necessary to support all of these devices is quite the undertaking. It could take a couple of years before it’s truly realized.
An additional challenge for 5G network architects is the difference in spectrum between most existing 3G/4G networks and new 5G networks. The network operators in the United States alone have invested over $100B in mid-band (3-6 GHz) and high-band (24GHz+) spectrum. Due to the physics of RF propagation, these frequencies do not yield the same coverage areas as low-band cellular. So, the existing towers cannot simply be upgraded without leaving significant 5G coverage gaps and holes.
Comprehensive 5G Solutions
Connecting everyone, everywhere to 5G is our reality. No matter what frequency of 5G you’re looking to extend and strengthen, we have a repeater for it! Contact us for questions!