Making Way for 5G and the Universal Innovations to Follow

Originally published April 25, 2018

As the world edges closer to the reality of the fifth generation (5G) of wireless communications, a new age of product innovations is at the doorstep as wireless providers contend with the last remaining hurdles to a national rollout.

Since 4G LTE was introduced in 2010, offering speeds of up to 100 megabits per second (Mbps) for wireless communications and surpassing the performance of wired networks, we began taking full advantage of things like video conferencing and live streaming for music and video without the annoying stuttering or freeze frames.

Now we’re on the verge of 5G with 10 times the speed of 4G and lower network latency in the single-digit milliseconds. The anticipated performance is expected to unlock the potential of the Internet of Things (IoT), 4K video, remote-controlled robotics, telemedicine, autonomous driving, virtual reality and augmented reality.

Earlier this week, AT&T provided a glimpse into their 5G tests as they prepare for deployment in 12 U.S. markets later this year. Their current tests in cities of Waco, Texas, Kalamazoo, Michigan and South Bend, Indiana reveal potential gains of more than 1 gigabit per second (Gbps) in throughput. Meanwhile, Sprint and Verizon are promising 5G rollouts in several cities before the end of the year.

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