5G aims to be 100 times faster than our current wireless technology and even speedier than what Google Fiber offers through a physical connection to the home. The incredible speeds and responsiveness achieved with 5G open up new possibilities, and the technology had people buzzing at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona, Spain, this week.
“5G will take it to the next level,” said Cristiano Amon, president of Qualcomm’s chip business. “There will be “ubiquitous connectivity from all sorts of devices.”
Do be mindful of the hype surrounding 5G. The earliest mobile deployments likely won’t happen until 2018, with broader availability in the years after.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t dream about what’s next. Here are a few things you’ll be able to do with Five-G.
- Hollywood-like Web speeds
Pages usually take a second or two to load, even on a fast connection. With 5G, those results will come immediately.
Or if you wanted to kick back and download a movie, it would zip to your device in 15 seconds instead of the 6 minutes it takes via 4G.
- Remote health care
Telemedicine becomes feasible with Five-G, whose communication lag is brief enough to permit doctors to perform some procedures remotely, said Matt Grob, chief technology officer of mobile-chip maker Qualcomm. Carriers can set up 5G networks so those medical procedures get priority over someone watching YouTube videos.
The lag time is so minuscule that doctors could use robots to operate on you from 1,000 miles away. People in remote regions can be treated by specialists, even if they’re halfway across the world.
- Self-driving cars
5G networks can respond fast enough to coordinate self-driving cars, either with cars talking to a central controller at a road intersection or communicating with each other.
“You can imagine no traffic lights in the street — the cars are crossing, but they’re not bumping into each other,” said Volker Held, head of innovation marketing at network equipment maker Nokia