5G’s the talk of the wireless tech town. It’s the much cooler big brother of 4G that lets you like, comment, share, and download up to 100x faster than you can now. Ever since its 2018 debut, countries and telecom companies have been racing to build and launch these networks. It’s already available in places like Chicago, Houston, and China.
Here’s what a faster, more reliable internet connection could mean for your wallet.
You could pay more to text, binge-watch, and WebMD your symptoms. If you want to get in on the 5G action, you’ll need to swap your phones, laptops, and routers for ones with 5G connectivity. That costs money. And since phone and internet companies are investing hundreds of billions of dollars to upgrade their networks, you’ll probably start paying more on your monthly bills, too.
But other things might get cheaper. Experts say extra-fast internet will bring big changes to the manufacturing and agriculture industries. Think: smarter robots making your next TV and special tech that helps farmers care for crops and livestock. And efficiency = savings. When businesses save money, they could charge you less, too.
Related: Easy Ways to Save on Food
You can spend more time doing stuff that matters...like making money. 5G could make a lot of new things possible. From virtual reality doc visits and self-driving cars to a fridge that orders kombucha as soon as you run out. When the rest of your life runs more smoothly, you can start to make the best use of your time...all the time.
theSkimm: The full impact of 5G probably won’t hit until late 2020. Or 2021. And there’s no guarantee we’ll be living like the Jetsons when it does. But 5G will probably impact how much things cost. For better or worse.