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Could super-fast 5G replace broadband in our homes?

21st November 2018
Could super-fast 5G replace broadband in our homes?

A survey commissioned by Three UK claims that 5G will be so fast and reliable that it will become a viable alternative to fixed line broadband in homes and businesses.

The UK’s leading mobile network providers have sworn to bring 5G to the UK by 2019, promising faster connection and download speeds for their customers. For example, EE announced this month that London, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Belfast, Birmingham and Manchester would be the first cities to receive 5G in mid-2019, with another 10 cities to join by the end of 2019.

So, why the excitement about 5G?

In theory, 5G offers download speeds 10 to 20 times faster than 4G - so powerful that it will be able to rival the capabilities of a separate broadband connection in your home. There are also exciting prospects for 5G when it comes to VR (Virtual Reality), AR (Augmented Reality), and driverless cars.

Chief Executive at Three UK, David Dyson, predicts that individuals will be using 13 times the amount of data in 2025 compared with today, and believes that customers will be able to save money by running off 5G alone:

"Maybe not for the whole country, but certainly a significant majority of the country, I strongly believe 5G can offer a good enough home broadband experience for people to effectively ditch their copper [or fibre] connection."

Are there any potential downsides to 5G?

Some experts are warning the public to not get carried away with the hype of 5G, as utilising its full capabilities will not be attainable for many years, if ever. 

You will also require a brand-new handset in order to successfully run 5G. To put this into perspective, most handsets today are unable to use 4G to its maximum capabilities, and 4G has been around since 2012!

Still, experts are predicting that sales for 5G smartphones worldwide will reach 15.8million in its first year, increasing to 77.5 million, before reaching “over 200 million by 2022”.

What do you think? Do you buy the 5G hype, or believe that its importance has been over inflated?



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