The 5G Revolution is right upon us, or is it? According to experts with the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSMA), all the hype surrounding 5G is misleading. The 5G networks are “in the early stages” and will only be compatible with select smart phones in the coming years. These 5G compatible phones will be expensive and will rely on 4G networks to get going. The 5G rollout is dependent upon the installation of new towers; ideally new towers and transmitters will need to be installed 500 feet apart from one another. This influx of cell towers will emit short wavelength microwaves and will bombard homes with significant amounts of radiation. Over a million new towers will have to be erected to make 5G work as intended. According to HealthImpactNews, the “small cell” transmitters will be mounted on top of electric utility poles, municipal buildings, schools, and in city parks, on top of street signs, bus shelters, and anywhere else telecom companies wish. There will be no escaping the intense microwave radiation pulsing through people’s homes and communities.
All the hype surrounding 5G is misleading because of the price people will inevitably have to pay with their health. Developing brains are most vulnerable. Notwithstanding, 5G won’t become a reality for consumers unless mobile operators upgrade their networks with 5G gear made by companies such as Finland’s Nokia or China’s Huawei. Furthermore, phone makers will have to mass produce handsets that contain 5G radios that can hook up to the new networks. Until then, 4G wireless networks will carry most of the load, as 5G networks take time to erect. GSMA experts predict that 5G will only make up about 15 percent of worldwide mobile subscriptions by 2025. The 4G networks will account for an estimated 45 percent.
Between 2018 and 2020, GSMA estimates that mobile networks will initially spend close to $500 billion to rollout 5G worldwide. IHS Markit analyst Stephane Teral says, “the risk of disappointment exists” because the new network will cost a fortune but may not have the return on investment that the industry predicts.
If 5G lives up to the hype, it will eventually be capable of streaming movies, music, and navigation for self driving cars straight from the cloud. 5G also promises download speeds that are a 1000 times faster than older, 4G networks. If 5G lives up to the hype, a full length 8GB film could potentially be downloaded in six seconds. A party conference call could simultaneously translate multiple languages in the moment.
When industry leaders gathered at the Mobile World Congress trade fair in Barcelona this summer, they warned that consumers may initially be disappointed by 5G because the promised benefits are many years from fruition. Promises such as robot surgeons and self driving cars that can communicate with one another through the cloud may turn out to be disappointments at first. Even though 5G has the potential to eliminate the lag time when mobile data is sent or received, it will not be an immediate benefit. According to Yannick Sadowy, the director for Accenture, 5G will not eliminate latency for smart phones until 2023 or even as late as 2025. It will take a decade or longer before 5G begins to produce the results that the industry has promised. In the meantime, prepare to have your brain bombarded by constant short bursts of untested microwave radiation.