It’s that time of decade again. Time for another network upgrade from your cell provider. Over the next couple years you can expect every cell carrier to start pitching their shiny new 5G network. To kick things off, AT&T has announced its first 5G cities will be Dallas and Waco, Texas, as well as Atlanta, Georgia.
5G networks will be faster than the 4G speeds you’re used to. Much faster. Of course, you’ll need a new phone to take advantage of the faster network, but there aren’t currently any 5G phones available just yet. AT&T expects that manufacturers will come out with some 5G-compatible phones later this year and on into 2019. By that point, the company will have announced even more cities that will receive 5G networks.
So, what kind of speeds can you expect on a 5G network? It’s hard to say until we see some real-world applications. The theoretical maximum for 4G is 100 megabits per second, but you probably see less than that in practice. However, the theoretical maximum for 5G is 10 gigabits per second, so even a small fraction of that speed could potentially be faster than your home internet. In fact, Verizon is planning to start its 5G rollout by aiming at home internet users rather than cell phones, specifically for this reason.