The possibility and the power of 5G has been a point of conversation for a while now, but AT&T is the closest so far to having this tech ready for customers. They’ve outlined a plan for the rest of 2017, nicknamed, 5G evolution. It boasts over 1Gbps speeds, up to 14Gbps by some reports, and looks to be even more reliable than LTE.
So what does all of this mean for AT&T customers and people on other networks? Verizon isn’t too far behind, but AT&T is still looking to be the first 5G service out of the gate in 2017. If you’re using AT&T now, or are planning to in the future, there are a few things you need to do to get ready for 5G.
5G For Current AT&T Customers
For AT&T customers that have DirecTV Now service (in Austin), a free 5G video trial will start near the beginning of 2017 so users can test out the new capabilities of the service. Using the already put in place service of DirecTV Now, AT&T will stream video to users at 5G speeds using the new technology.
That sounds extremely limited, but don’t worry, during the later half of 2017, more trials will take place with the help of Qualcomm Technologies and Ericsson.
These trials will be far more accessible, but not all of the details are entirely clear yet. These will, however, be all throughout the United States, not just in Austin, which is great news for all other US AT&T customers.
If you fall outside of this bubble, you’re going to have to wait even longer to get your hands on 5G technology. Other markets should soon follow right in AT&T’s footsteps as everyone races to make the best use of the technology.
5G For Previous AT&T Customers and Customers With Other Carriers
Even if you aren’t signed up with AT&T, the fact that a company has already conducted business tests, and will be doing much more public tests soon, is great news. Verizon is another company not far behind, and once one company has 5G working in acceptable state internationally, everyone else will be able to catch up even faster.
Getting ready for 5G is as easy as getting ready for any new technological advancements. Keep your ears and eyes open for new news, follow your current carriers closely, and always make sure your Android devices are up to date if you think, or hear, they’ll be 5G ready in the future.
When Can You Expect 5G With Other Carriers?
The jury is still out when other carriers will have 5G ready and available, but 2017 is looking to be a good year for emerging 5G technology. The very second that your carrier has a chance to put a horse in the best 5G race, you’ll hear about it if you’re keeping up with the news.
Keep a close eye on AT&T and its competitors, because we’re about to have an interesting year.
Is There Anything Concerning About 5G?
Since so much about a 5G network is still up in the air and consumer testing outside of business has been limited, there isn’t much of anything negative to speak about. Besides any problems related to infrastructure, I only see two issues. Even without it being new technology, 5G is going to be taxing on an Android battery, or any battery, so it’s always important to conserve power.
The second possible problem with 5G is with cost and availability. It’s easy to assume that 5G will just take the place of 4G, but what if the transition isn’t the smooth? We don’t know if 5G plans are going to cost more than 4G ones, or if 5G access will be severely limited at the start. It’s all up in the air for right now, but everything in the air is still interesting.
Any concerns I have aside, I’m excited to see the possibilities that come along with 5G, and I hope you are too. We’re all going to be getting ready for 5G together, whether you’re using AT&T or not, it’s an exciting time for everyone.
If you have any questions about 5G, or just want to share some of your excitement, please use the comments below.