5G: Cellular Network Evolution

in Project HOPE2 years ago

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Image edited in Canva

There have been lots of talks in recent times concerning the new technology innovation called 5G. Few critics attribute the coronavirus as an adverse effect of the 5G network. This begs the question, what is 5G, and why is it spoken about so much.

What is 5G

5G is the latest and 5th generation wireless mobile network, with its predecessors being the 4G, 3G, 2G, and 1G. They are designed to increase network speed and response time significantly. 5G uses high radio frequencies (spectrum) to carry information through the air. This spectrum has shorter frequencies (between 30GHz and 300GHz called millimeter waves) and is less clustered. Communication principle states that shorter frequency equals larger bandwidth, allowing the 5g network to carry more information faster.

5G technology is designed to provide a network with ultra-low latency (1 millisecond), increased capacity, increased availability, uniform user usage, and improved efficiency and performance. 5G technology will make the internet of things have improved performance by making edge computing in IoT possible.

How Does 5G Work

Wireless networks used radio frequency to send information. 4G used masts to transmit signals over long distances. 5G works using a similar principle but deviates from the 4G by using less clustered radio frequency, enabling it to carry more information through the air. These radio frequencies are shorter, hence increasing the bandwidth capacity of the 5G network. These frequency waves range between 30 GHz and 300GHz called millimeter waves (mmWaves).

These millimeter waves come with challenges as they can not carry information over long distances, as buildings and trees easily block them. To prevent this challenge, transmitters are used and placed on buildings and towers instead of masts.

5G slice networks and distribute network operators based on their network usage, meaning a tech firm will most likely be on a different network slice from an individual surfing the net for social media purposes.

5G Comparison With 4G

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Image edited in Canva

There are a few differences between the 4G and the 5G wireless technology. One of the critical differences between 4G and 5G is the latency level, with 4G having a response time of about 200 milliseconds and 5G response time being given as 1 millisecond. Another key difference between the 4G and 5G networks is the network speed, with the 4G network having a max network speed of 2Gbps and an average download speed of about 32 Mbps and the 5G network having a max network speed of about 10Gbps and an average download speed of 240Mbps. Furthermore, the 5G network supports more devices per square meter when compared to the 4G network. The key differences of the 4G and 5G networks are given in the table below.

Network SpeedMax 2GbpsMax 10Gbps
Level of latency200 milliseconds1 millisecond
Broadband support per sqm100,000 devices1 million devices
Mode of Transmitting SignalMakes use of mastsMIMO incorporated antennas

Benefits of 5G

  • The Ultra-low latency level of the 5G network means that innovations like IoT can perform more efficiently. Also, streaming videos online and surfing the internet will be done easily and faster.

  • Due to the high network speed of the 5G network, users can save more time when downloading data (movies, music, ebooks, etc.) from the internet.

  • The 5G is designed on a radio frequency that is less cluttered when compared to the 4G meaning there will be less network congestion. Also, with its network slice ability, users requiring more network usage can be placed on a separate network slice.

  • 5G possesses higher broadband to support more devices, more than ten times the capacity 4G network can support.

  • 5G connects more devices, giving the application like IoTs to run more efficiently

Drawbacks of 5G

  • One of the drawbacks of the 5G network is that its frequency can be disrupted by buildings and trees and require antennas within reachable distance on buildings and towers. This means that the 5G network may not be effective in remote areas.

  • There are security concerns with the 5G network due to its increased bandwidth. The larger bandwidth makes it easy fr hackers to attack with ease. Also, 5G network lacks strong encryption making it easy for hackers to be precise with attacks.

  • Having high network speed and an average download speed will make the 4G network look like a joke. The 5G network has poor upload speed compared to the 4G network.


5G network is the 5th generation of wireless network technology. The 5G network has higher speed, lower latency, higher bandwidth, and has broadband large enough to support more devices than the 4G network and its predecessors. 5G network uses short radio wave frequency to transmit signals which require antennas equipped with transmitters mounted on buildings and towers.


hello @stealthog,
I think one of the biggest concerns for people is the radiation that these antennas emit, on the other hand this fear may be due to the newness of the technology. in the history of mankind people are always afraid of what is new.

Hello @sigiloso, first of all I congratulate you for such an interesting reading, it is good to be informed about the new technology in the cellular topic, because it is an urgent topic due to the high level of traffic that already exist in the previous networks (4G, 3G, 2G, 1G), which causes that this service is not as efficient as we need it.

Technology is evolving and certainly the 5G is the future because it will offer use data speed as compared to what we have now and even it is available in some of the countries but I expect in next few years it will be easily available in so many countries.

Hello @stealthog , your post have been supported by @reminiscence01 using @steemcurator07 account.

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