5G: The Three Key Factors – Device

Ricky Shock, Mobile Product Manager

For the final entry of this three part blog, having already covered the other two key factors: MNO and location, I will talk about the requirement of a 5G compatible device.

There are now over 100 5G enabled smartphones on the market but very few, currently available in UK. The question of “Will it work on my phone?” is a common one and, in most cases, the answer will, unfortunately, be no, meaning a new device will be required, as it not just a case of downloading the latest software update.

There are already a few out there, in fact a quick Google search for “5G compatible devices” outlines there are now eight* models (with carrying versions) available to the 5G enthusiast, but don’t expect them to come cheap. In many cases, these devices represent the manufacturer’s latest flagship products and they all boast great accompanying features for the end user.

Before I cover some of those handsets I quickly want to address another burning question around 5G devices: “What are Apple doing?”

As it currently stands, Apple do not have a compatible unit available for its extremely loyal fan base to take advantage of just yet. So for Apple, this could see some of their more traditional “technology chasing” iOS users make the leap over to Android in the interim. Apple haven’t yet announced their exact plans around the next iPhone, referred to by most as the iPhone 11, although they usually tend to do this around September each year. I’m sure we’re definitely close to hearing something soon, but what is concerning is current rumours are suggesting that even this upcoming device might not be read for 5G technology. So for iPhone users, it’s just a case of wait and see for now.

Moving on to devices that are currently available, the eight device ranges I referenced earlier are as follows:

  • Samsung Galaxy S10 5G
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ 5G
  • OnePlus 7 Pro 5G
  • LG V50 ThinQ
  • Huawei Mate 20 X 5G
  • Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 5G
  • Oppo Reno 5G
  • Royole FlexPai

I won’t go on to address each of these devices individually, each can be found online and choosing the device that’s best for you can only truly be done by you, however having had a good look into each of them I am going to offer you some insight into my preferred handset of those released so far.

Samsung Galaxy S10 (including S10e/S10+)

Samsung are clearly the biggest technology rival to iPhone in the UK and they certainly haven’t cut any corners with their newest series. The Samsung S10 range offers a number of devices; the S10, the S10e and the S10+. Each boasting a number of great features including:

Samsung Galaxy S10

• Infinity-O true edge-to-edge display
• Wireless PowerShare between compatible devices
• Multiple cameras and an ultra-wide lens
• Water resistant up to 1.5 metres for up to 30 minutes
• Fast wireless charging (wireless charger required)
• 128GB – 512GB versions available

Pricing is variable dependant on chosen specification but approximate RRPs vary from £599 for the S10e up to £1099 for the S10+.

So there you have it, hopefully, having read all three parts of this blog, you should now have a greater understanding of the three key factors that determine access to this fantastic new technology. For those who don’t currently have access, for whatever reason, don’t worry! In the coming months, 5G is going to be made more accessible for all of us, as the landscape is changing every day. On that note, I’m off to speak to our CDO, to try to talk him into shelling out for a new 5G work phone, just for me…

*Please note: this information was accurate at time of publishing, on 28th August 2019.

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