The First Cities to Get 5G

February 23, 2018

5G’s lightning-fast network speeds are coming, and many cities are hoping to be the first in line. Dallas; Waco, Texas; and Atlanta will be among the first cities to receive AT&T’s 5G mobile network, while Sacramento, Calif., is slated to be Verizon’s first pick to get the fifth-generation wireless technology.

Just how fast is 5G? It’s said to be 100 times faster and five times more responsive than the current 4G and 4G LTE, the technology currently being used on smartphones and wireless devices. You’ll be able to stream high-resolution VR content without any lag time—for example, a typical download might take 30 seconds on 5G compared to 6 minutes on 4G—and the technology is expected to a foster a more efficient and seamless era of smart-home technology and interconnected devices.

Wireless carriers are in a race to deliver 5G to households. AT&T has been among the first major mobile carriers to name specific cities that will receive mobile 5G by the end of the year. Dallas; Waco, Texas; and Atlanta will be three of the 12 cities that will receive AT&T’s 5G by the end of the year. AT&T said last month that it plans on launching 5G in 82 cities by mid-2019.

Verizon says it will have 5G networks in a handful of cities by the year’s end too, with plans for its rollout to take place in Sacramento, Calif. 

But there’s a caveat to 5G: You’ll need a 5G-capable device to take advantage of it, and there are currently no smartphones on the market that are available with 5G hardware—yet. AT&T expects 5G-ready devices to reach the market this year and in early 2019. Intel announced this week in partnerships with several PC makers—including Dell, HP, Lenovo, and Microsoft—that it plans to launch 5G laptops by late 2019. Until then, some tech experts are recommending consumers wait to upgrade their devices if they want to take advantage of the new wireless technology.

Source: “Dallas, Waco, and Atlanta Will be the First Cities to Receive AT&T’s 5G Mobile Network,” TechSpot (Feb. 21, 2018)