5G is the latest generation of mobile network technology - and is a huge step forward from 4G. Not only is it significantly faster, but it’s also more responsive and offers better connectivity than the previous generation.
When it comes to 5G vs 4G speed, 5G is the clear winner with an average speed six times higher than 4G - meaning you can download high-res movies in seconds. In a 5G speed test, we’re now seeing top speeds of over 1Gbps, but in the future, the maximum speed of the 5G network might be closer to 10-50Gbps.
But the benefits of 5G don’t stop at the speed. With reduced latency - or lag - you’ll experience less buffering while streaming video or making video calls. And because the 5G network has higher bandwidth, it can connect to more devices at the same time, so you’ll have a more reliable service in busy areas and at peak times.
And what about 5G coverage? 5G networks are expanding quickly across the UK, starting with large towns and cities. Whether or not there’s 5G coverage in your area depends on which network you’re with. Most networks have an easy-to-use 5G coverage checker.
At Carphone Warehouse, we have a huge range of 5G mobile phones to pick from. Whether you’re looking for the cheapest UK 5G phones or a top-of-the-range handset, we have a deal for you. Or if you have the phone and just need a 5G SIM card, we can help you out with one of our SIM-only offers.
From the brand-new flagship Galaxy S23 to the more accessibly-priced Samsung A3452S 5G, we offer 5G Samsung phones across all price points. So, if you’re after a new handset - whether it’s a pay-monthly contract or a Samsung SIM-free 5G phone - there really is something for everyone.
But what if you already own a handset? How do you know if your Samsung phone is 5G ready? You can check the Mobile Network settings on your phone, or take a look online at the product specification of your phone.
If you’re wondering which iPhones are 5G ready, the answer is simple: iPhone 12 models and later support 5G - including the iPhone SE (2022). And how to get 5G on a compatible iPhone? You’ll need to be with a network that supports 5G and have a mobile plan that includes 5G. If you have all these elements, your iPhone should automatically connect to 5G where it’s available.
Apple believe that its 5G iPhones can theoretically reach speeds of up to 4Gbps in real-world conditions. If that impresses you, check out our best deals on the latest Apple iPhones, including the iPhone 14 and iPhone 13, which are both 5G ready.
5G is the fifth generation of mobile networks. It’s the new global wireless standard, following on from 4G.
Like 3G and 4G before them, 5G networks are cellular networks. Using radio waves, the 5G devices in a cell - a small geographical area - communicate with an antenna, connecting them to the internet and telephone network. 5G has a bigger bandwidth than previous networks, so many more devices can be connected at once.
Currently in the UK, average 5G download speeds are six times faster than 4G, at 90Mbps-230Mbps vs 36.4Mbps. The theoretical maximum speed of 5G is between 10 and 50Gbps, though we’re not at that level yet.
To get 5G, you’ll need a 5G capable phone, a plan which includes 5G, and 5G network coverage in your area.
An easy way to check if your phone is 5G ready is to search online for the phone’s product spec - look for the Network field in the specification.
Alternatively, you can check via your phone’s settings. For Android users, go to Settings > Network & internet > Mobile Network > Preferred Network type. And for iPhone users, go to Settings > Mobile Data > Mobile Data Options. If 5G is listed, then your phone supports it.
At Carphone Warehouse, we have all the 5G deals you could possibly need. If you already have a 5G plan and just need a compatible phone, we have a whole range of 5G SIM-free phones from basic and cheap to best in class. Conversely, if you have a 5G phone but no plan, we can help here too – choose from 5G pay-monthly SIM-only deals and 5G Pay As You Go with Voxi.
And if you need both the 5G phone and a plan to go with it, there are plenty of great-value 5G pay-monthly phones on offer. As well as handsets from the two biggest brands - Apple and Samsung - we have more affordable options from the likes of Oppo and Xiaomi. Or how about the Moto G62 5G or one of the latest Google phones - the Pixel 6a or Pixel 7 Pro 5G? With so much on offer, you’ll be spoilt for choice.