What will a 5G mobile phone be capable of?

Faster download speeds and more reliable connections are just some of the benefits mobile users should expect once 5G networks begin to take shape.

The next generation of mobile internet connectivity is widely anticipated to begin rolling out in 2019 and is set to bring with it new powers for smartphone users.

With download speeds likely to increase significantly compared with current generation 4G, a high-definition film could be downloaded in a matter of seconds over 5G, with a music album downloading as quickly as single songs do today.

5G holographic phone call
Manchester City women’s football captain Steph Houghton took part in the UK’s first 5G holographic call as part of Vodafone’s 5G trials in September last year (David Parry/PA)

Alongside the ability to send and receive data more quickly, 5G networks are also expected to be able to handle greater quantities of data, meaning smart devices getting smarter and able to carry out more complex tasks.

Users will be able to play more graphic-intense games on their mobile devices at a higher frame rate and with less lag, for example, or be able to ask a virtual assistant a question while streaming a TV show at the same time.

Once fully rolled out, it is believed that network coverage will also be more reliable and run at a capacity more commonly associated with fibre broadband today.

Trials of the technology are already under way in the UK, with the first networks, initially focused in towns and cities, due to begin rolling out later this year.

TechnologyWeb editor