The advancement of 5G Internet: what is it and how does it work?

You know those “crashes” during an important video call at work? Well, these are bottlenecks still seen with 4G. To go a step further, find out what 5G is and how it can solve everyday problems.

5G internet represents a revolution in network connection. Anyone who lived through the transition from other “Gs”, such as that from 3G to 4G, can understand the leap represented in connection capacity. And 5G arrives to further boost the quality of radio frequency services.

You know those “crashes” during an important video call at work? Or the delay in downloading a larger file? Well, these are bottlenecks still seen with 4G.

To go a step further, discover what 5G is and how it can solve everyday problems and also generate important innovations for commerce and technology companies.

What is 5G internet?

5G is the recent evolution of internet networks. It is faster and more stable than its predecessors and is enough to increase the potential of using network connections in an increasingly technological and data-rich world.

The letter “G” stands for General Packet Radio Service. When created, the signal service reached a maximum speed of just 80kb per second. Given the slowness, it obviously needed to evolve over the years until reaching the current phase, which is 5G.

The central idea of 5G internet is to use the best radio spectrum to allow multiple devices to connect to the same network, without overloading it and generating losses or delays.

Until then, it is estimated that 5G internet speed will be between 1 and 10 Gbps (gigabytes per second). By way of comparison, in the first half of 2021, the OpenSignal consultancy report pointed out that the best average download speed obtained in Brazil was 22.6 Mbps (megabytes per second).

The importance of 5G internet starts with advantages such as downloads in a very short time, watching streaming videos with higher quality and goes all the way to increasing the functionality of connected devices per area.

How does 5G internet work?

The 5G available around the world is already superior to 4G, but it is still far from reaching its full potential.

Most places that start using this technology start with the DSS (Dynamic Spectrum Sharing) standard, which increases connection speed, but uses the infrastructure coming from 4G.

In this way, the so-called “pure 5G” is still a privilege of the few countries that came out ahead in this race.

For 5G to work correctly, operators need to first install fiber optic infrastructure to increase connection quality and coverage, a process that takes time.

5G internet works via radio waves and uses higher telephony frequencies to operate, from 3.5GHz to at least 26GHz. Do you remember physics classes? Being inversely proportional (wavelength and frequency) means that the range of 5G is shorter. This will require a greater number of transmitters and receivers in large cities.

Furthermore, it is worth mentioning that 5G internet will only work on smart, cutting-edge devices: smart TVs, smartphones, headphones and other technologies. And due to its power, it will make all these devices connect simultaneously, without loss of signal quality.

The implementation of 5G internet has been underway since the end of 2018. In Brazil, we can say that we are more than two years behind, however, we are moving forward, as of 5G auction, to make it a standard in the country.

5G Internet in Brazil

5G internet is already present worldwide in 61 countries and 1,336 cities, according to a report from Viavi Solutions this year. And this number updates and grows quickly as the days go by.

In this report, Canada and Brazil appear as new members of the list, because it considers the first steps and not just “pure 5G”.

Officially, the 5G auction carried out by the National Telecommunications Agency (Anatel) will dictate the progress of the technology's implementation in the country. On November 4th, 85% of radio frequencies were made available for a mere R$47.2 billion.

This is the mark of the arrival of 5G internet in Brazil. Companies that win the auction must comply with the following obligations, according to the Federal Government:

  • Bring 5G coverage to all capitals and cities with more than 30 thousand inhabitants;
  • Guarantee 4G internet on federal highways and locations without connection yet;
  • Implement a fiber optic network in places with little or no connectivity infrastructure;
  • Implement the Integrated and Sustainable Amazon Program (PAIS) and the Federal Public Administration’s private communication network project;
  • Pay for the migration from Parabolic TV to satellite TV;
  • Invest in connectivity projects in schools.

When will 5G internet arrive in Brazil?

5G internet should start operating in Brazil from 2022. Anatel's notice has targets from year to year and the first ones have already been stipulated. All Brazilian capitals must have 5G coverage by July 2022. For the entire country, the limit period is 2028.

An important gap in the use of 5G in Brazil is the use of cutting-edge cell phones, which can make access to this network difficult for a large part of the population initially.

Smartphone models that have the ability to connect to the 5G network have very high prices.

As for the companies that will offer this service, the main ones involved in the auction are the traditional Brazilian telephone companies, which you probably already know.

However, new names have emerged that could explore the ranges to bring internet services to the population. Names like Brisanet, Cloud2U and Fly Link are some of the new additions to a total of six new operators offering 5G in the future.

5G in the internet of things

The launch of 5G internet is important news for the IoT market, “internet of things”. Sectors such as distance education, tele-delivery, telemedicine and automation are some of those that should benefit from the new technology.

The internet of things, which concerns the connection between mobile devices (machine to machine), seemed to be just waiting for the emergence of a network capable of improving the performance and security of connected devices.

With the expectation of a network up to ten times faster, there will be a major reduction in latency and an improvement in the general picture of devices that handle network data.

Many remote devices rely on real-time network performance, such as remote control of large machines, drones, security cameras, etc. The 5G network will make technological innovations more reliable and allow new developments to emerge.

What are the possibilities of 5G internet

Under ideal conditions, 5G internet speeds can be up to 100x faster than 4G, as short waves make them faster. It will therefore reduce the stubborn crashes and noises that make many people irritated.

For a technology company, a “crash” can mean great failure or the unfeasibility of using a certain mechanism. 5G internet will enable technological projects under development to be consolidated.

iFood, which is a foodtech, has an ecosystem of innovations in which 5G internet will be of paramount importance. In addition to generating new intelligent solutions, they will help us follow ESG principles with projects in the development phase.

Since 2019, a project order deliveries with drones is being carried out and since last year, iFood has been authorized by Anac to operate two delivery routes in Campinas. At this moment, operations are monitored by a specialist in “piloting” drones, but technologies such as 5G can enable more automated drones.

In addition to the use of drones, iFood also has experience with deliveries through ADA robot, an autonomous, electric, environmentally friendly 100% vehicle.

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