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Difference between 3G, 3.5G, 4G LTE, 4G +, 4.5G and 5G

Who, today, does not use, even occasionally, mobile internet on the cell phone? After all, we can not always have a Wi-Fi at our disposal, and getting disconnected is out of the question. But do you know the different types of mobile internet, and do you know what they mean? If not, check here the difference between 3G, 4G, 4G +, 5G and LTE.

For the beginning of history, the letter “G”, which comes after the number, type, 3G, 4G and 5G, means Generation. That means it’s a generation of wireless technology. With every generation, the mobile internet gets faster, and safer.

In fact, every 10 years or so, a new generation of mobile internet is launched. And new technologies need to be offered by smartphone manufacturers and carriers. Each of the Generations has standards set by a 3GPP that must be strictly adhered to in order to be able to use certain G (3G, 4G, 4.5G) terminology.

Prehistory of the mobile internet

First Generation (1G): Voice Only

The term 1G was never used much until 2G was available. This was the first generation of cell phone technology, born in the 1980s. What they offered was just phone calls (and believe me, that was incredible at the time). 

Internet 2G: SMS and MMS

The second generation of cell phone transmission arrived in 1992 and brought some more features to the menu, such as plain text messages. With this technology, although the handsets were designed for telephone calls, it was possible to transmit text messages at up to 64 kbps .

2.5G: The beginnings of data – GPRS 

The term 2.5G is used to refer to the set of technologies that are between 2G and 3G. In search of smartphones with better connections, this technology has been developed. Also known as Internet GPRS (General Packet Radio Service). Up to 2G, only two-point-per-circuit networks were in use, and were inadequate for the internet. With GPRS, packet switching was introduced. At that moment the mobile internet can be made available in a primordial way. The transmission became 50 kbps, with 80 kbps of download and 60 kbps of upload .

When the mobile internet actually started

3G Internet – HSPA

In the 2000s, the internet began to arrive on the cell phone. The 3G internet was a great improvement compared to everything that existed before it in this question. This, with the data rate of  384 kbps , we were able to use with higher quality services that are now consecrated, such as social networks. From here, we had web browsing, email, video downloading, image sharing and other smartphone technologies were introduced in the third generation. The 3G should be able to handle about 2 Mbps per second .

3G’s top speed is estimated at about 2 Mbps for mobile devices and 384 Kbps for mobile vehicles. The theoretical maximum speed for HSPA + is 21.6 Mbps. The technologies were WCDMA (Wideband CDMA), CDMA 2000 and UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications Standard).

Internet 3.5G – HSPDA 

Launched in 2006, the 3.5G Internet, also known as HSPDA (High-Speed ​​Downlink Packet Access), was an enhancement of the 3G connection, which theoretically allowed data speeds up to 42.3 Mbps , but in practice was about something in about of 14 Mbps . Overall, HSDPA are the standards used and offer data rates of 5-30 Mbps .

Internet 4G LTE

Behold, we have come into the present world. The famous 4G data network was launched in 2008, providing web browsing support, email and downloads, game services, HD mobile TV, video conferencing, 3D TV and other things that require higher speeds.

With the implementation of 4G, some 3G features have been removed, such as spectral scattering radio technology. The maximum speed of a 4G network when the device is in motion is 100 Mbps or 1 Gbps for low mobility communication, such as when stopped or walking.

In fact, the minimum speed of the mobile network so that it can be considered a 4G should be at least 100 Megabits per second, and up to 1 Gigabit per second. The network also needs to share network resources to support more concurrent connections. As it developed, 4G has surpassed the speed of many home wireless broadband (Wi-Fi) internet connections.

At the beginning of this technology, few devices were able to support it. 4G coverage was limited to large urban centers until recently. It was in the last two years that the cities of the interior began to receive the 4G. Until then, the smaller cities received Internet in the 3G standard. 

The 4G is the same as LTE. In the United States, our 4G are the HSPA + networks, which we call here 3G + or 3G Plus.  

Internet 4G + and 4.5G

The 4G + is the 4G with the feature allowing simultaneous connection to more than one frequency or range of spectrum. There in the United States it is called the LTE Advanced.

The 4.5G , which is currently being sold in America, is what the Americans call LTE-Advanced-Pro, an improved version of 4G +. This network exceeds 100 Mb / s. 

See the difference between 4G + and 4.5G

  • 4G +: Two frequency bands at the same time.
  • 4.5G: Three frequency bands at the same time, with 4 transmit antennas and 4 receive antennas.

Internet 5G

Scheduled for 2020, the 5G Internet will be the new revolution in data rate rates. In December (2017), 3GPP released the minimum requirements for the 5G network. The big highlight goes to the minimum speed of 100 Mb / s download, but other details also draws attention, such as the lower latency (which is how long your smartphone takes to open a website, for example).

The 5G Internet will also allow the number of connected devices to be larger (1 million  devices per square kilometer) and distinguish applications by layer, allowing you to prioritize critical applications within the data stream.

But the big thing about 5G will be the ability to connect multiple devices, and interconnect them. For example, connect your smartphone to your car, your home security camera, your lock, among other devices that are part of the internet of things .

The Internet 5G should replace the 4G gradually, as happened with the switch from 3G to 4G. In the beginning, few locations and few devices will be compatible with technology, and gradually the population will gain access to novelty.

 

 

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