4G is shorthand for fourth generation cellular technology. Although the very first 4G networks were deployed in Korea in 2006, it wasn’t until 2008 that 4G networks began appearing in North America. Per the technical specifications of 4G standards, a 4G network and attached device must be capable of 100 Mbit/s during high mobility use (such as using the device in a moving car) and 1 Gbit/s for low mobility use (sitting in an office building).
Although many cellular providers advertise 4G service–and that 4G service is certainly speedy compared to the previous 3G data speed–there are currently no 4G providers actually meeting the requirements of the 4G standard specifications. Current revisions to 4G technology, such as Mobile WiMAX v2, are set for deployment in the coming years and should significantly increase potential 4G network speeds.
- By Jason Fitzpatrick on 03/29/13