Average 5G Speeds in South Korea Fall Well Behind Maximums, Opensignal Finds

Dan Jones
6/21/2019
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Opensignal has published what it calls the first "real analysis" of 5G download speeds, contrasted against the performance of various 4G devices in South Korea.

Opensignal finds that -- in South Korea -- the average download speeds for 5G downloads, on the likes of the Samsung S10 5G and LG Electronics V50 ThinQ 5G, is 118 Mbit/s, 48% faster than comparable recent 4G smartphones, and 143% faster than other 4G phones.

While those average 5G speeds outpace what 4G devices see, Opensignal's results also show that those averages track well behind the maximum capabilities supported by 5G in South Korea. Opensignal lists maximum 5G download speeds of 1.2 Gbit/s in the US and 988 Mbit/s in South Korea.

Opensignal thinks that these early results will improve and change as 5G matures. The firm notes that early 5G networks, like those in South Korea, use the non-standalone 5G standard, which relies on the 5G frequency for downloads, but utilizes a 4G frequency for control plane functions. Opensignal says that average speeds will improve as standalone 5G comes online, as well as more 5G bands.

Why this matters
South Korea -- and the US -- are amongst the earliest markets for 5G. The networks and applications for 5G (and the data performance delivered on those networks) are likely to change drastically over the coming years.

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— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

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