Earlier in 2018, we revealed the answer to a survey that asked readers what they thought would be the most influential technology of 2018. Out of the six options, AI received the lion's share of the vote at 42 per cent, while 5G was chosen by 10 per cent of respondents. As the hype over AI continues, so too has the uncertainty surrounding the next generation of wireless connectivity. While 5G may not have broken into the mainstream yet, it is nonetheless backed by a host of international organisations. But what does this mean for businesses?
Congratulations to Optus for re-creating fixed-wireless internet in Australia, and overbuilding parts of the nation that are currently covered by a government-owned wholesaler with ridiculous return expectations. This ebook, based on the latest ZDNet / TechRepublic special feature, explores how 5G will connect the Internet of things, edge computing and analytics infrastructure with minimal latency. As the National Broadband Network (NBN) company would happily inform Optus, its fixed-wireless network has been beset by congestion issues, is unprofitable, and is incapable of hitting 100Mbps download speeds without major overhauling. But the NBN is using fixed-wireless as a suburban and rural outlier, the last form of connectivity before users are sent across to tackle the ins and outs of its satellite service, whereas Optus is offering its service in built-up areas where it already has a multitude of towers -- and that is set to make all the difference. The Singaporean-owned telco is currently offering AU$70 per month for unlimited data with a 50Mbps minimum speed guarantee -- the same pricing as its lowest NBN broadband bundle.
Telstra is the fastest mobile and fixed-line broadband provider, according to the latest reports from Ookla, with mobile downloads averaging 53.42Mbps and top download speeds across its fixed-line networks coming in at 72.99Mbps. Telstra also had the fastest average upload speed of 17.53Mbps, with Vodafone following on 13.32Mbps and Optus trailing on 10.14Mbps. Ookla reported Optus as having the lowest latency, however, at 28 milliseconds, while Vodafone's average latency was 30ms and Telstra's 31ms. Overall, Australian carriers provided an average download speed of 49.17Mbps, upload speed of 14.12Mbps, and latency of 30ms. Telstra also took out Ookla's fastest fixed network award [PDF], with a top download speed of 72.99Mbps, top upload speed of 20.14Mbps, and an average latency of 32ms.
The future of mobile phones is finally here. You can go out and buy a 5G phone, and if you happen to be in one of the six cities across the UK in which EE's 5G network is up and running, you can get the blistering mobile broadband speeds we've been promised will revolutionise our mobile lives, again. I've spent the past two weeks equipped with the OnePlus 7 Pro 5G on first-out-of-the-gate EE's 5G network. I streamed 2K HDR movies, downloaded whole albums in seconds and generally used it like I would on my extremely fast 350Mbps home wifi – data caps be damned. So what is 5G like, and is it worth buying into?
It's possible to be excited by the potential of 5G and yet not thrilled about having to buy a new device to use it. You wouldn't believe that from Samsung's press event last night, which boasted about how great 5G, and its new 5G handset, will make our lives. To take advantage of the speed and extra capacity 5G offers, Samsung hopes that we'll all buy the new Galaxy S10 5G. The phone is a larger S10, with a bigger screen, longer-lasting battery and, crucially, a 5G modem. But there are two issues with this, one of which is the sheer lack of 5G infrastructure currently operational.