The Verge went into the Illinois metropolis last week to check it out ourselves, and also while the speeds were certainly blazing fast, coverage was horribly shoddy. You can also only access it with the Motorola Moto Z3 with the 5G Moto Mod. Likewise Verizon is currently relying only on the mmWave spectrum, so you need to be nearby one of its 5G nodes in Chicago to access it. Walk around the corner, or put a surface not made of glass between the node and you, and you’ll likely drop back down to LTE.
The only two 5G smartphones which will be made available to US clients so far this season will be the Verizon-exclusive Samsung Galaxy S10, that does not even have a firm release date, and the Verizon- and also Sprint-exclusive LG V50. (Samsung’s Galaxy Fold is assumed to emerge in a 5G variant as well, but there is no carrier announcement for that yet.) AT&T hasn’t been stopped by that from using this random and meaningless milestone for a marketing opportunity. “There are currently 19 cities across the country where AT&T is the only provider to provide mobile 5G support to businesses and customers and well ahead of our competition,” the company’s press release reads.
AT&T is promising clients it’ll get access to this 5G version of the S10 later this spring, in addition to another 5G smartphone from Samsung later this year that we can only assume now describes either the forthcoming Samsung Galaxy Note 10 or a newer version of the S10 that supports both the mmWave and sub-6 spectrum, as a result of Qualcomm’s new X55 chipset.
So both firms’ 5G strategies are a bit of a marketing disaster right now, and certainly resulting in a significant confusion. 5G will arrive together with smartphones carrying proper 5G modems to support both the conventional and deliver those high speeds that are promised. But until today, Verizon and AT&T are racing one another to a race’s finish line only the two firms care about. Meanwhile, we as customers are stuck with silly ploys such as the imposed AT&T 5G E logo which, if you recall, is not actually real 5G, but yet another trick aimed at making AT&T seem like it has arrived at the future quicker than its company rival.
AT&T currently boasts 19 cities using 5G support as of now , but there is once again a large caveat: there aren’t any smartphones which may utilize it yet. Furthermore, the only accessible apparatus, a mobile hotspot it provides of AT&T, can’t nevertheless be bought in stores.
However, before then, the only device that can access its system is the Netgear Nighthawk 5G hotspot. The gadget is only available to some clients in its first 5G markets and business partners, but not in stores. Also, but even if you like a customer did want purchase it without going via AT&T’s evaluation program, which requires you register and be selected, it would cost $500. The Qualcomm X50 processor, which means it supports the short-range, mmWave 5G on AT&T’s network is contained by the hotspot. Presumably, this year, AT&T plans to establish an hotspot, said both to support both with policy that is wider. (The X50 hardware supports both the mmWave and sub-6 at the moment, but maybe not on AT&T’s network structure since it is designed now.)
AT&T is far from alone in muddying the 5G waters. Verizon may have the first 5G handset but the company’s 5G deployment is far less powerful than AT&T’s. While AT&T first established 5G in 12 cities last year, Verizon only began offering its version of the service in”select regions” of both Chicago and Minneapolis.