What differences exist between 5G and fiber optics?

What differences exist between 5G and fiber optics?

Who does not know the ADSL? Not many years ago, it was the fastest way to surf the internet. However, when fiber optics came onto the market , we all switched to it because of its speed and the novelty of the moment… it was the latest!

Now with the arrival of the 5G connection , they ensure that it will be a success due to its novelties, speed and browsing experience. We are all waiting for its evolution and the expectation is maximum.

Can you imagine browsing from your own phone at a higher speed? The 5G connection will surprise you and make your network experience extraordinary , no doubt! Fiber optics cannot be installed in all parts of the world for different reasons, so 5G is a great opportunity to advance in less expensive technologies.
Discover the differences between 5G and fiber optics

In this article

What is fiber?


Fiber optics is a data transmission medium on the internet that carries information to a place through a cable with glass or plastic filaments in which pulses of light travel and which is connected to a modem. Its installation is expensive and it has been an innovation when it comes to supplanting ADSL . There are two types , symmetric and asymmetric:

Symmetric: It is when you check the speed of your internet connection and the upload and download speed are the same. Also known as symmetric fiber optics.
Asymmetric: It is when you check the speed of your internet connection and the upload and download speed are different. We refer to it as fiber optics .

Both types of fiber are important. The download link is essential to download data , while the upload link is essential for sending data, for example. Whoever has a symmetric speed will be able to multitask on the network, and whoever has the asymmetric one will be a bit more limited because it will be easier for the system to crash faster when multitasking. More information on symmetric and asymmetric fiber HERE .

“In fiber optics, the download speed is essential to download data, while the upload speed is essential for sending data”

What is the 5G connection?


It is a wireless technology for mobile phones that began in the 1980s with 1G and moved to 2G when people began to send SMS between various devices. It was followed by 3G , which gave people the option to surf the internet from their mobile phones and; Finally, the current 4G arrived , which allows that navigation to be even faster.

The 5G connection represents a change of technological era, since it will allow us to digitize more services . It is being implemented in Spain gradually and in a few years it will replace 4G technology, in addition to increasing data speed. Its full implementation and maximum performance is expected by 2025. Meanwhile, 5G can be used sharing the same band as 4G but offering lower performance until it is housed in the DTT channel band , a process that is already underway and which will be ready in July 2020.

But what are the main characteristics of the 5G connection? It has a maximum data rate of 10Gbps, 100% signal coverage, 1000 times faster broadband and latency of only 1 millisecond. Translated, the 5G will allow us a longer battery life, a greater number of devices connected at the same time without crashing and a lower consumption of energy from the network .

Differences between 5G and fiber

We have already seen the characteristics of fiber optics and the 5G connection . The latter is here to stay, and just like the modem, fiber will possibly have a smaller number of followers in the coming years. What are the differences between one and the other?

The installation of fiber is quite expensive economically, but it is very stable, fast and has a fairly low latency . In addition, in Spain , telephone operators have made a large investment in the deployment of fiber optics and with plans to bring this fixed connectivity to 90% of municipalities in 2021. This does not create much urgency to deploy the 5G connection to provide the service that Fiber is already being provided, as it can be in the US, where there is no such deployment and everything is betting on the 5G connection to lower costs.


in favor of fiber

  • The deployment is already done.
  • The next innovations that arrive will not need a new line, but a simple adaptation of current technology.
  • The stability of fiber optics is unique today.
  • The contracted speed is real, whatever the external conditions or circumstances outside the cable.
  • Fiber optic latency is between 1 millisecond and 5 milliseconds. We are talking about practically instant connections.

In favor of 5G

  • Deploying a fiber optic network is very expensive, while deploying a 5G mobile network requires only the installation of an antenna, it is more affordable and faster.
  • The coverage is total and it is easier to scale that of a mobile network than that of an optical fiber.
  • 5G allows to offer a better service on networks in full movement.
  • Technological progress at all socio-cultural levels
  • Creation of smart cities and opening of new businesses
  • More connected devices and promotion of other technologies.

Stable connection at home… and on the go

The main advantage that 5G has over fiber optics is that while the latter allows you to have a stable and fast connection in a specific place (your home), 5G will allow you to have exactly the same thing but anywhere as long as carry your mobile with you.

The speed of the connection together with the rates of the operators, reaching unlimited gigabytes in most cases, could unseat fiber as a form of connection at home. And you, what do you think of everything that 5G offers us ?
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