One of the trending topics at the just ended mobile conference in Barcelona was 5G. In Africa, 4th generation (LTE) rollout has been slow & most of our users are still using 1st n 2nd generation hand devices. 4G Network in Africa is just hieroglyphs because the speeds are horribly slow. It Takes a while to download 3mb video on WhatsApp, yet it shows LTE.
One of Eyetro Digital’s writer, Osidc, have seen it in most places in different countries he visited recently. He said, “l don’t know if it’s due to capacity problems or badly configured equipment or it’s poor service delivery. Our 4G is not playing the game”.
Whilst Africa is still struggling with 4G, some super countries with South Korea leading the pack have started rolling out 5G networks.
What are 5G networks? In layman’s view, it will allow blistering speeds peaking at around 1.2 gigabits per second. You take a second to download a 1.2 gigabytes movie.Okay, let’s compare Apple to apples. 5G will be about 20 times faster than 4G. It’s like earth and sun.
The cost for rolling out these 5th generation networks will bite us hard in our pockets. It simply means mobile operators will need to change their equipment on towers & you directly will need to upgrade to a 5G enabled handset. As a country, we are not ready for such upgrades now. If you set to buy a new phone, think twice. Osidc also thinks it’s wise to wait a bit, get a 5G enabled device, which he thought they will start hitting our stores towards the end of 2019.
Officially 2020 is the year when 5G is going to be rolled out but big brands have already started rolling it to keep customers happy.
Let’s dive a bit more on the technical side. Be careful you can drown here cause you need to have a rough idea of frequencies, interference.
Scaring deep ends. To simplify things, 5G will use higher frequency bands above 6Ghz. What’s the advantage of these high frequencies? You can push more data, less interference & more directional. The flip side is to get a good connection you will need direct line of sight & higher frequency bands have coverage limitations -they won’t cover long distances. This implies we will see more base stations & antennas sprouting around & maybe every household will need an antenna inside the house.
Internet of Things is here & with these promises of blistering speeds, “I think we lucky to be part of this generation. Long back dogs used to be the best man’s friend, now. Mobile phones are not just man’s best friend it’s now a darling & part of our life…” added Osidc.
“I am reading so much just to get it right in my head. I might have mixed up facts n lied but the truth is 5G is unstoppable n it will be blistering fast. Slow internet sucks, thus why I am so hyped up!”