Understanding the 5G spectrum

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To understand the 5G spectrum is to understand how 5G works. Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband technology is ushering in a new era of cellular technology that incorporates the electromagnetic spectrum, radio waves and more. Read on to learn about the 5G spectrum and its corresponding bands.

The electromagnetic spectrum

The electromagnetic spectrum includes everything from infrared rays to radio waves, X-Rays, visible light, microwaves and more. Cellular technology operates upon the radio spectrum (not visible), which includes frequencies of 3 kilohertz (kHz) to 300 gigahertz (GHz).

5G bands in the electromagnetic spectrum

The 5G spectrum includes all type of spectrum including low band and mid band spectrum of the 1G through 4G LTE frequencies as well as the new high-band spectrum, also known as millimeter wavelength (mmWave). Verizon’s 5G spectrum includes 28 and 39 GHz mmWave bands. The 5G spectrum will span the widest across the radio spectrum than any previous generation of cellular technology.

Currently deployed 5G network, i.e. Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband (UWB), operates on a higher mmWave frequency with a wider spectrum bandwidth —than previous cellular technologies. 1G, the first cellular network, operated at 850 MHz to 1900 MHz. Meanwhile, 2G and 3G added frequencies to their technology of 2100 MHz, and 4G added 600 MHz, 700MHz, 1.7/2.1 GHz, 2.3 GHz and 2.5 GHz. The wider the spectrum, the more data that is able to transfer among those waves. Additionally, the later the generation of cellular technology, the wider the spectrum for transferring data.

The addition of these frequencies to the network technology will benefit consumers as well as businesses thanks to the wider bandwidth. An increase in bandwidth—literally, how wide the spectrum of radio waves is—will allow for more devices to join the network as well as decrease the lag time between data sending and receiving. This means more devices can join the network and operate at a faster rate.

Learn more about the 5G spectrum as well as all the capabilities of 5G.


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