How Can I Get 5G on My Phone?
So, you’re excited about 5G’s faster speeds and lower latency, but don't know if you can access the 5G network? 5G cellular devices should automatically connect to 5G when available. Though, there are a few requirements.
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What You Need to Get 5G
1. Live in a 5G Area
While 5G carriers aim to provide nationwide 5G coverage, it’ll take a few years to get there. Thus, to connect to 5G, you must live in an area with 5G coverage supplied by your carrier.
You can view your carrier’s 5G coverage map to check if 5G is available in your area:
If it is, you can use our guide to find your closest 5G tower.
2. A 5G-Capable Device
5G operates on a different set of cellular frequencies than 4G and LTE. To tap into those fast, low-latency, high-capacity 5G frequencies, your mobile device must be 5G-capable. 4G/LTE devices will work in a 5G world for years to come, but they will not pick up 5G signals.
5G-ready devices began launching in March 2019 with the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G. Since then, Apple, LG, Motorola, OnePlus, Google, Samsung, and other phone manufacturers have released 5G devices.
If your cellular device debuted in 2019 or later, you may already have a 5G device. The easiest way to tell is if the 5G logo appears on the top of your screen. If it doesn’t, you can also check your phone’s tech specifications.
Samsung S22 Series
3. A 5G Plan
To get 5G on your 5G capable device, you need access to your carrier’s 5G network via a compatible plan. All major US carriers offer 5G plans. Though, it’s recommended to read the fine print, as not all 5G plans are created equal.
By now, you may already know that there are different flavors of 5G: Low-Band 5G, Mid-Band 5G, and High-Band 5G. Each varies in speed and coverage. Some plans only provide access to Low-Band 5G networks, while others provide access to all three. Verizon’s plans are a good example.
*Verizon’s Unlimited 5G Ultra plans support Low-, Mid-, and High-Band 5G. Their Unlimited 5G plan only provides 5G Nationwide access, which is their Low-Band 5G network.
Low-Band 5G offers performance relatively close to that of 4G. If you want to access the fastest 5G networks available, you’ll want a plan that supports Mid- and High-Band 5G.
Contact your carrier to see if your plan supports 5G. You may find that you have a grandfathered plan. While cheaper, it may be time to upgrade if you want to enjoy the power of 5G.
4. Make Sure 5G is Enabled
By default, 5G is enabled across all 5G devices unless manually disabled. If you’ve never customized your network settings, it’s still worth checking, especially if using a used device. Here’s how:
Settings → Cellular → Cellular Data Options → Select 5G On or 5G Auto
5G On uses 5G whenever it’s available, even if it may reduce battery life. 5G Auto uses 5G only when it won't significantly reduce battery life.
Settings → Connections → Mobile Networks → Network Mode/Network Operators/ → Select 5G/LTE/3G/2G
Depending on your carrier, enabling and disabling 5G may not be an option. If it’s not, 5G should be enabled since it can’t be customized.
How Can I Tell if I'm Getting 5G?
If you’re in a 5G area with a 5G-capable phone using a 5G plan, the 5G logo on the status bar will confirm you’re connected to a 5G network.
The type of 5G logo displayed reflects which 5G network you’re connected to:
- 5G – You're connected to AT&T, Verizon, or T-Mobile's Low-Band 5G network.
- 5G+ – You’re connected to AT&T’s Mid- or High-Band 5G networks.
- 5G UW (Ultra-Wideband) – You're connected to Verizon’s Mid- or High-Band 5G network.
- 5G UC (Ultra-Capacity) – You're connected to T-Mobile's Mid- or High-Band 5G network.
I’m Struggling to Get 5G Indoors
Boosters capture existing 4G and 5G signals, amplify them, and rebroadcast them indoors. They do so using powerful amplifiers and cellular antennas. Though, they currently only work with certain Low-Band 5G frequencies. Find out which frequencies here.
Wilson Amplifiers is the leading provider of cellular repeaters for homes, offices, and vehicles. All units work with all North American carriers and devices. Once installed, poor 5G coverage in your home, business, or vehicle will be a thing of the past.
Call us (1-800-568-2723), email us (firstname.lastname@example.org), or chat with us, for a free consultation. We’re happy to answer any question you may have and get you set up with the best booster for your needs.
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