What is the difference between 4G and 5G?
4G and 5G are two types of mobile broadband standards that help us get high-speed internet on our phones. Currently, 4G is the most popular standard and dominates the mobile market. But that’s all about to change as 5G makes its presence worldwide.
So, should you start worrying about the difference between 4G and 5G? Just take a deep breath and follow along as I explain how these two technologies compare with each other.
What is 4G ?
4G stands for the fourth generation of mobile network technology that offers a fast, efficient, and versatile mobile experience for smartphones, tablets, computers, and more. This generation promises low latency and increased spectrum efficiency.
4G is a great leap from 3G in terms of speed and efficiency. You can think of it as “4G LTE” (which is the official name). 4G is primarily used for mobile data applications, and it’s often marketed that way.
What is 5G?
5G stands for fifth-generation mobile telecommunications technology, which means that everything will be connected to everything else.
This new system allows devices to connect at much faster speeds and with lower latency, resulting in better quality and more connection where we most need it. It means we’ll be able to stream videos, play online games and generally surf the Web at high speed.
The 5G system is also designed to help reduce our energy consumption by utilizing more intelligent devices.
Difference Between 4G and 5G: 4G Vs 5G
Fourth-generation mobile phone networks were launched in late 2000, attracting the attention of many innovators. This spurred them to innovate many products and services, including mobile apps and streaming services, and even robots.
Fourth-generation networks provide a faster data speed than third-generation networks. This is useful for downloading information and browsing the internet. However, the desire for even more speed and capacity to connect millions of devices in real-time has resulted in the creation of 5G mobile technology.
What sets fifth-generation (5G) networks apart is the ability to transmit data much more quickly than previous wireless systems and with greater capacity. Yet 4G will continue to be used alongside 5G as the latter technology is still in its early stages of development.
One significant difference between the fourth generation of mobile telecommunications and the fifth is the frequency band. The fifth generation uses millimeter-wave transmissions, which have several advantages, though everything comes with a tradeoff.
With the advent of 5G, many things will be possible in the field of innovation. The concept of IoT (the Internet of Things) is nearly impossible with 4G networks, but as the world will experience full-fledged 5G networks, this dream will soon become a reality.
Smart cities, automated factories, robot surgeries, flying drones are some of the applications of 5G. The US and South Korea, for example, are investing millions in infrastructure for self-driving cars and other high-tech applications that 5G can support.
Fifth-generation mobile network technology is sure to revolutionize the way we use our phones and tablets. Devices will become more connected, and communication between devices will grow. Congested traffic will be an issue of the past with the fifth generation’s bandwidth.
Verizon Wireless (a telecommunication company located in America) has started 5G services in many U.S. cities, and people are already feeling the difference from their previous 4G services.
Faster speeds, larger bandwidth, and lower latency (lag time) are the key differences between 4G and 5G. These aspects of the fifth generation make it appealing for upgrades across the globe. I will now explain these differences in more detail so that you can understand how our world is going to change.
Speed: (4G vs 5G)
Fourth generation mobile networks are slow compared to fifth generation. Typical 4G networks can deliver a maximum speed of 100 Mbps, though real-world performance is generally no more than 35 Mbps. 5G could be 100 times faster than 4G, with a top theoretical speed around 20 Gbps. And in real-world tests, speeds have reached 50 Mbps to 3 Gbps.
5G will use super high-frequency airwaves called millimeter waves.
But, a higher frequency limits the coverage area, so to increase the coverage, one can fill in the empty spaces with a beamforming technology that uses small cells.
4G is excellent for downloading videos and live streaming, but it’s 5G that will allow for ultra-high resolution 4k video calls.
People are looking forward to the speed of network 5G. However, it can’t penetrate walls, and 4G doesn’t suffer from this immensely.
The maximum speed defined by each generation may vary depending on the network you’re connected to, the device you’re using, and other factors.
Capacity: (4G vs 5G)
A mobile network’s capacity is the number of devices the network supports. With fifth-generation, the capacity rises from 4,000 to 1 million—an increase of over 250 times!
The 4G network can stream quality video and live TV, but it can’t address every person who uses it due to congestion. A high-frequency 5G network, capable of handling many more devices per area, can do so.
Additionally, the 5G network can accommodate many users with increased speed available at the user’s disposal. For example, self-driving cars, home products, and industrial automated machines are now possible only because of the widespread availability of 5G network, making the Internet of Things highly viable for smart cities.
The United Kingdom currently has 100 megahertz of spectrum to cover its entire population, but with 5G, the spectrum will increase to 1000 megahertz for faster speeds and capacity.
With the increase in user numbers, the possibility of data breaches is just as great when rolling out a 5G network, so businesses should implement a security protocol before it gets deployed in their area.
Latency: (4G vs 5G)
When we talk about the gap between 4G and 5G, we often discuss latency. Low latency makes the fifth generation a world-changing technology.
Every previous generation is mostly recognized based on speed, but our new generation of mobile technology focuses on latency. This factor will change the world dramatically because many industrial IOT appliances and autonomous machines, like self-driving cars emerge as this technology reaches its peak.
The latency of 5G technology is one millisecond, whereas latency in 4G is 50 milliseconds. The sharp fall in latency or response time allows much application to evolve. One such sector is telemedicine, where the surgeon performs brain surgery using robots connected with low latency 5G.
One surgeon in China performed brain surgery using 5G technology.
Fourth-generation networks are excellent for communication media that don’t require low latency, like voice calls, live streams, and downloads. The low latency and high network capacity of 5G will make the Internet of Things more feasible.
Difference Between 4G and 5G technology: 4G VS 5G
|It stands for fourth generation of mobile technology||Definition||It stands for fifth generation of mobile technology.|
|35 Mbps||Speed (Practical)||50 Mbps to 3 Gbps|
|100 Mbps||Speed(Theoretical)||20 Gbps|
|Packet Switching and message switching.||Switching technique||Packet switching and message switching|
|30 – 50 milliseconds||Latency||1 miliseconds|
|Wireless LAN and wide-area networking are combined.||Network architecture||More intelligent architecture, with Radio Access Networks (RANs).|
|2 – 8 GHz||Frequency Band||Frequency range 1(< 6 GHz)|
Frequency range 2(24 GHz – 54 GHz)
|Single Unified Standard Wimax and LTE.||Standards||5G NR (New Radio) standard together with LTE|
|It uses concatenated codes for error correction.||Forward error correction||It uses adaptive modulation and coding scheme (MCS) to keep the bit error rate extremely low.|
|It can support about 4000 devices per square kilometer.||Capacity||It will support around one million.|
|Ultra high speed internet access for email and services like online satellite mapping and video conferencing.||Services and application||Artificial intelligence(AI) and IoT applications.|
|700 MHz to 2600 MHz.||Frequency of Operation||28 GHz and 39 GHz|
|High power consumption.||Power Efficiency||90% more efficient than previous network.|
|Fair||Spectrum efficiency||Double than that of previous network.|
Conclusion: (4G Vs 5G)
Once you understand the difference between 4G and 5G wireless networks, you’ll discover that both are equally important. Nearly every modern phone is 4G-ready, so most users won’t have any problems.
And although carriers are devoting more time and resources to 5G wireless technology, fourth-generation networks will continue to develop, resulting in higher overall speeds.
In 2015, the meaning of “4G” changed to mean LTE Advanced. But many people still associate the term with HSPA+. With a 5G network, you can access data at speeds up to 20 gigabits per second, making it perfect for remote control robots and driverless cars.
- Also Read: Difference Between 3G And 4G
- Also Read: What is 5G Network?
- Also Read: Pros And Cons Of 5G Technology
- Also Read: History Of 1G Technology