Originally published August 23, 2018
2018 is the year in which carriers will begin launching 5G commercially in limited markets while at the same time they are broadly deploying a pathway to 5G services. In February, AT&T announced that Dallas, Atlanta and Waco would be among the first cities to experience the much-anticipated networks that will provide faster speeds, lower latency, higher endpoint densities, improved battery life and have a greater reach than before. As the excitement mounts, carriers have confirmed that trials are also running across Texas, California and New York. But wasn’t it just a few years ago when everyone was getting so excited about 4G? What’s changed, and why is everyone awaiting the arrival of 5G with such anticipation?
When 4G arrived, it offered us a more powerful way to interact with our mobile devices. We had faster email downloads, the capability to send high definition photos, a much more engaged social media experience and the ability to stream music. With 4G, iPads, other tablet devices and SIM-enabled PCs suddenly came into their own as they could now operate as well as, if not better than, when they were connected to Wi-Fi. Yet, 4G left us craving even more. It was official. We were addicted. So it’s unsurprising that almost as soon 4G had arrived, many of us were looking into the future for the next big step forward.