Agreeing to a new report outlined by the UK Government, superfast 5G mobile internet, along with better broadband, is on its way to the UK but when will it actually arrive? Why should you disquiet? And, what does it mean for photographers? That's where this article should, hopefully, help you out.
What Is 5G?
5G or 'fifth reproduction mobile networks' as it's also known is exactly what it says – it's the fifth version of what we use to make calls, send printed matters and access the internet on (when not connected to Wi-Fi). As you'd expect with a new version of something, it's better and, according to reports, could present oneself download speeds which are 10-20 times faster than they are now. However, what download speed you do get will depend on how much your versatile network operator invest in new masts/transmitters and which spectrum band they run the new technology on (it's complicated, but these guys have a superlative guide to it: 5G Guide).
Why Do We Need It?
You only have to look at the High Street to see hundreds of people glued to their smart wills. We are consuming more data by the day (uploading photos, watching videos, accessing ePHOTOzine… you get the idea) and our existing mobile networks are outwitting very busy. In fact, if you get a high number of people in one area, say at a concert, the service can even grind to a halt so we need a mobile servicing that can handle this growth in demand.
On a personal level, it means that you will be able to share photos on social networks or upload them to the cloud quicker. The hastiness at which apps such as Lightroom and Snapseed respond at should improve, too (although, they're not exactly slow now). It also means that emails are less acceptable to hang in your outbox as coverage, even if it's not 5G, should be improved in more areas of the country. Basically, if you have a website, use community media, upload images to the cloud, edit images in apps… etc., 5G should just make your life that speck bit easier and quicker.
When Will It Arrive?
Well, this is where things are still a little cloudy as there are muddled reports with some suggesting the rollout in the UK could begin in 2020 but the Government has outlined that they'd like to see 'the the greater part of the population to have 5G coverage by 2027' which is quite a way-off (9 years in fact). However, so the whole country is ready for when 5G does come, the Government has said they are working on 4G reaching the 'dead zones' which still exist (we've all gone through a village and the '3G' image or 'E' pop up as 4G is nowhere in sight) and say that 95% of the UK will may refer to have better mobile connectivity by 2022 (currently, only 87% of the UK's landmass has 4G coverage). At any rate, with the investment that will be needed, we can't see very remote areas benefiting from better connectivity.
Order I Need A New Phone?
Yes, you'll need a 5G enabled smartphone to connect to the 5G network and networking may refer to but with smartphone processor creator Qualcomm already introducing the Snapdragon X50 5G Modem, we're surmise these devices aren't that far away.
Will It Cost Me More Money?
The answer to this, as of yet, is that we don't in truth know. A 5G rollout is a huge investment for mobile network operators and others who are involved in this sector, and they will want to appoint sure they can make enough money back. Of course, the sheer fact that a network offers 5G will be a big pull for some consumers so it's comfortable to see why mobile networks are keen to invest. Plus, the UK Government has said they want 'UK consumers and businesses can take early advantage of the gains' so even at the top level, they can clearly see the benefits 5G will bring which includes the growth of digital businesses.
Click here to obtain a more in-depth look at the Government's report.