Meanwhile, the companies developing 5G networks know they have their jobs cut out for them. To help carriers prepare for the next generation, they’re talking about technologies that will fit in between 4G and 5G, under names like 4.5G.
At CTIA, Nokia CEO Suri said his company will start selling what it calls 4.5G Pro later this year. This product will let service providers combine as many as five bands of spectrum for speeds up to 1Gbps and will have less latency than current LTE networks, he said.
Though the 5G standard doesn’t exist yet, carriers will be able to use 4.5G Pro to test out a range of new applications, including ones that require more bandwidth, lower latency and improved machine-to-machine communications, Suri said.
If carriers bite, and their subscribers start taking advantage of these transitional networks, 5G may arrive in 2020 with some ready-made uses after all.
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