How Fast is 5G?

The conversion to 5G technology and the accompanying breakthrough in speed might seem a bit like going from covered wagon to transcontinental airliner in one swift step.

Operators performing 5G speed trials have reported speeds of up to 70 Gbps. Industry-sponsored simulations have also produced impressive results with data speeds increasing from 71 Mbps for 4G users to 1.4 Gbps for 5G users in the millimeter wave.

Accompanying the significant uptick in speed with 5G technology is the dramatic decrease in latency. This is an important factor for new technologies such as self-driving cars and “virtual” robotic surgery that rely on instantaneous communication. With 5G technology, latency in the 1 millisecond (ms) range can be expected, whereas latency of around 20 ms is typical for 4G.

The range constraints of 5G technology have motivated a trend towards more flexible architectures in 5G with the decomposition of the base station into new logical elements. 

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