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LTE, LTE +, 5Ge, 5G, 5G + … this is how your mobile will confuse you for years to come

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The first 5G mobiles They were launched last year, and since this year the vast majority of high-end and mid-high-end terminals have 5G modems. However, there are several types of 5G networks, and unfortunately it will be somewhat difficult to understand what type of 5G network we are connected to.

Currently, in the mobile with 4G we find all kinds of mobile network modes in the status bar. Among them we have 4G, 4G +, LTE, LTE +, LTE-A, etc. Android 11 comes prepared to differentiate between different types of 5G networks, and it can be very confusing. The official modes that will be available now for 4G and 5G will be the following:

  • LTE: 4G normal
  • LTE +: LTE with Carrier Aggregation
  • 5Ge: LTE Advanced Pro
  • 5G: NR, below 6 GHz
  • 5G+: NR in mmWave bands

5Ge: has no 5G

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As we see, in the 5G there may be some confusion. The first, 5Ge, It is one of the most controversial since it is being used in the United States by the operator AT&T, despite the fact that as we see it has nothing to do with 5G. This category of the network is not more than 4G but it has Carrier Aggregation with at least 3 bands, 4 × 4 MIMO and 256 QAM. With this, quite high speeds can be obtained, but it is still 4G.

5G: below 6 GHz

The 5G as such will be real 5G, but it will not be the one that offers the highest speed. In this case, we will find that it will cover all the network connections that are being made with bands below 6 GHz. In Spain, two of the three bands in which 5G will operate are below that figure: the 700 MHz and 3.6 GHz, where the latter is already available in Spain and is where Vodafone 5G currently operates.

5G +: above 24 GHz

Finally, we have 5G +, where the plus does not mean the same as in LTE. With 5G + we find that a frequency band located in the mmWave, or millimeter band, will be used. These bands are higher than 24 GHz, and among them we will find the 26 or 60 GHz band, where the first will be the one we use in Spain and in the EU to obtain the highest possible speeds with 5G. Of course, the coverage of mmWave bands is very limited, and it will only be available in cities because they will hardly go beyond a few hundred meters or exceed the kilometer with luck. Currently, this type of connectivity usually appears on mobiles as 5G UWB.

Thus, only when we see 5G or 5G + will we be connecting to an antenna using the true standard 5G NR.

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