5G Coverage in Rural Areas
While high frequency 5G still isn’t available in most rural areas, 200 million people across the United States can already access 600 MHz 5G from T-Mobile. The carrier is aiming to cover as many as 96% of rural Americans with this long range 5G network – which uses new technology to increase speeds by up to 400% on the 600 MHz 4G LTE frequency band.
Is 600 MHz 5G available where you live? Let’s take a closer look at 5G coverage in rural areas.
Why is high frequency 5G coverage limited in rural areas?
Wireless internet like 5G and 4G LTE uses radio waves to send online data back and forth between the client (your device) and the nearest cell tower. The speed and range of these transfers depends on the frequency band of the tower. Lower frequencies are slower, but can transmit online data further. Higher frequencies are faster, but have shorter ranges.
5G networks use much higher frequency radio spectrum than LTE networks – which means they have faster download and upload speeds, but shorter ranges. While LTE uses the 600 MHz, 800 MHz, 900 MHz, or 1900 MHz band, 5G uses frequencies of up to 40 GHz. The shorter ranges of these high frequencies make it difficult to deploy 5G in sparsely populated areas.
600 MHz 5G uses new networking equipment and software protocols to transform one of the lowest LTE frequency bands into a faster wireless network. While T-Mobile says that these new networks are usually between 20% and 200% faster than LTE, real world tests show that 600 MHz 5G can actually be up to 4 times faster than LTE in some areas.
Do you get 600 MHz 5G coverage?
While 600 MHz 5G still doesn’t have as much coverage as LTE, it’s already available in many rural locations across the country. Want to learn more? Find out if you get coverage through T-Mobile. For more options, see the Ookla 5G coverage map. To check your coverage for fixed (Wi-Fi) 5G or 4G LTE connections for homes and businesses, give us a call at (866) 439-6630.
How to connect to 600 MHz 5G
If you have a mobile data or fixed wireless internet plan with T-Mobile, you already have access to the carrier’s 600 MHz 5G network. As of now, you don’t need to upgrade to a 5G data plan to use the new network – any T-Mobile or Metro PC customer can use 600 MHz 5G as long as they have a compatible phone or router.
T-Mobile currently carries three phones compatible with its 600 MHz 5G network: the OnePlus 7T Pro 5G McLaren Edition for $900, the LG V60 ThinQ 5G for $900, and the Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G for $1300. Learn more about 5G compatible devices from T-Mobile.