Update: Our sustainability 5G speed test has turned into a kind of liveblog, because we spent the second day reporting (further below) in Chicago and testing the capabilities of Verizon 5G network to send ultra wide band signals to Samsung Galaxy S10 5G.
You can finally get the incredible speed of 5G phones in the US today, according to our tests, but only in two cities and only if you do what we call "5G shuffle."
We can test the Verizon 5G network in Chicago using the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G (and we will do it until Tuesday), and we can reduce the speed that is consistent with topping 1Gbps. One of our 5G tests peaked at 1.385Gbps.
But to get this headline-worthy speed, we basically have to move (or dance) around the 5G node that sits on a light pole on a certain block in Chicago. This is reported to be the same in the only other US city with active Verizon 5G node, Minneapolis.
Incredible 5G speed, with clear warnings
TechRadar became the first outlet with a 5G cellphone when Moto Z3 5G was launched last month, but the Verizon 5G network has just started running. Whether it's not as fast as that time, or we don't get a signal that is consistent enough to reach the height we see now. In fact it often drops back to 4G LTE mid-test.
Now, five weeks later and with the Galaxy S10 5G in hand, we get the speed that makes Verizon's engineers in the hands of New York look excited. They see speeds of almost 1.4Gbps in the wild for the first time too.
The speed test using the Ookla application gives us insight into peak raw speeds, and it's very good. But it's also important to do real-world tests – when doing 5G shuffle – to see how Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Android game downloads do.
The most surprising 5G test we did?
- The Stranger Things (All First Season) in 5G: 38.78 seconds
- Things Stranger (First Season) on 4G: 1 hour 16 minutes
Yes, we waited at the corner of the same rain road in Chicago to test this speed. One finishes in less than one minute, and the other takes one hour 16 minutes.
The difference is surprising in this 5G test. We use the Galaxy S10 5G which is connected to Verizon's ultra 5G wideband signal. Test the comparison of 4G using the iPhone XS Max on AT & T getting the signal & # 39; 5Ge & # 39; (which is actually not 5G, as we have reported several times and the marketing action that Sprint has demanded AT & T).
We can also download Fortnite in 2 minutes and 55 seconds and Asphalt 9: Legends in 2 minutes and 23 seconds on the Galaxy S10 5G.
Although these 5G tests are not at nearly 1.4Gbps, they are fast (around 1Gbps) and depend on whether the application maker is optimized to provide fast speeds. Download PUBG games from the Google Play Store, for example, a little slower than downloading the same game file from the Galaxy App Store.
In other words, the pull from our 5G device and direct view of the 5G node is important, but so is the encouragement from Google, Netflix and other content providers.
5G speed test: Chicago Day 2
Missing from Chicago is another technology reporter, but we are still here seeing if the 5G network survives after the hype of the initial launch day. The answer: yes and no.
We can confirm that 5G nodes are still active (this is not purely a publicity action like some implied). But for most of the day, our Samsung Galaxy S10 5G phone (we bought a unit at the Verizon Chicago main store on launch day) didn't match Verizon 5G and even 4G LTE signals.
That's right, we operate at 3G speeds for the better part of the second day. Is this a network problem? Is this a hardware problem? We will never know. But the telephone reset resolved the problem and we returned to 4G LTE and, at the designated place, 5G.
Obviously, 5G experiences growing pain. At almost 1.4Gbps in our raw speed test, according to our speed test, this shows incredible promise. But enveloping the entire city of Chicago will take time. Even saying 5G is more than 2020 than 2019 sounds hopeful at times.
We will continue to update the 5G test for a week because we get more time with the Galaxy S10 5G and compare it to 4G LTE in Chicago.