Canada will want to look at U.S. as 5G networks come online to help congestion: Opensignal


Canada might want to watch the development of 5G networks in the U.S. over the next year as our neighbour down south “will likely be an important bellwether of 5G’s impact on networks globally,” says a new Opensignal report.

The report, titled ‘The 5G Opportunity — How 5G will solve the congestion problems of today’s 4G networks,’ was published on February 20th and states that 5G will “provide a blanket of capacity” that’s built on a higher frequency spectrum bandwidth “that will help mitigate the daily cycle of congestion” seen in 4G networks.

But, according to the report, Canada is second on the list of countries in the world with the fastest 4G download speeds. The report said that there is only a 20 percent difference between the slowest (34.1Mbps) and fastest (43.4Mbps) average speeds over the course of the day.

“There was very little difference between Canada’s most optimized connections and its average speed, putting it not only among the fastest countries in our analysis but also the most consistent,” the report said.

As a result, it noted that Canadians are seeing very little difference in their connection whether the network is loaded heavily or lightly at any given time.

“That suggests that congestion isn’t a very big issue in Canada, which may be in part explained by the relatively higher cost of data services in the country,” the report said.

In comparison to the United States, Opensignal said 4G download speeds at the least busy hour of the day (28.8Mbps) were 90 percent faster than speeds at the busiest hour the day (15.3Mbps). On average throughout the day 4G download speeds were at 18.1Mbps, according to Opensignal.

“4G networks in the U.S. are really quite powerful, but due to congestion consumers rarely get access to the full capabilities of their networks,” Opensignal said.

According to the study, it looks like 5G might not necessarily benefit mobile technology in Canada — at least not right away. This would make sense since, in Canada, many experts have suggested that 5G will be utilized more for solutions like smart cities, smart homes, autonomous vehicles and even fixed internet connections in rural areas of the country.