Why do we need 4G technology?

Author : Nina Hlushchenko

Source : 112 Ukraine

If the need for 3G among Ukrainian users was obvious - the mobile Internet Edge is too slow for comfortable use, and the need for communication on the go, without binding to Wi-Fi networks, has already formed, then with 4G, everything is not so obvious. It is customary to talk about technology in the context of speeds, less often in the context of network capacity. But there are also less obvious things for which next-generation networks are needed. We'll tell about all aspects of the benefits of 4G
14:55, 4 April 2018

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For users: Speed

The speed of 3G networks is sufficient for all existing scenarios of using the mobile Internet. The lifecell operator claims on maximum speed in its networks at the level of 63 Mbit/s, but for real-life scenarios it is unattainable - at least mobile devices with a specific characteristic are needed, which usual subscribers do not have. The speed of 42 Mbit /s is more accessible for Ukrainian operators, and it is enough even for watching video in FullHD-resolution (if there are no restrictions on the part of the operator).

But in real life we cannot receive such speeds - they are affected by several factors, including the load on the network in a particular place and at a specific time, as well as a user terminal (old and cheap smartphones have limitations). However, this does not negate the fact that with 4G, the maximum network speeds for a "spherical user in a vacuum" will increase at times, as well as actual ones. But the difference for most scenarios of using the mobile Internet will be inconspicuous.


Users who return from 4G to 3G (for example, when they come to Ukraine from a trip abroad, where they used a local SIM-card), often note that the Internet in third-generation networks is slower. But what they perceive is connected not with speed directly, but with how quickly the network reacts to the user's reaction. This is due to differences in the architecture of the network. The 4G has fewer components compared to 3G, so the response is faster. This is especially true when starting watching online video or, for example, playing online games, although there is a difference in ordinary tasks.

Services and Applications

The 4G network was created for data, not for voice communication. Therefore, to receive calls in the networks of the fourth generation, the phone goes to 2G / 3G, and after - it connects back to 4G. This is the most common method at the moment. But there are such services as Voiceover LTE and VoiceoverWi-Fi, which allow you to transfer voice over the Internet, in the mobile operator's network or even over Wi-Fi. The latter is useful where there are problems with carrier communication. For example, in the construction areas where operators have not yet reconfigured the network, taking into account changes in load or terrain. It solves the problem of bad communication. But the service must be supported on the side of the network and the user device.

For operators: Network capacity

4G gives a large channel width, so in places where the load on the network is higher, operators need to use less equipment to serve a larger number of subscribers. This is especially important in the center of large cities, near tourist sites and other places of congestion. The result is the best quality of communication, the best user experience.

For the city: Internet of things

4G cannot be called an ideal standard for the development of the Internet of things. However, it is more suitable than all the previous ones (and probably worse than 5G, which is still in development stage). The Internet of things is a component of "smart" cities. Sensors allow you to manage resources more precisely (for example, to clean up garbage as you load containers, monitor large electricity consumption, monitor traffic lights, etc.). This saves resources to the city, makes it more convenient and safer.

Special Networks

On the basis of 4G, it is possible to build special priority communication networks for the needs of the city (this was possible up to 4G, but the possibilities of such networks were smaller and the cost of service was higher). For example, in the UK this year they launch the Emergency Services Network (ESN), which operates on a 4G basis and allows emergency services to receive information about incidents in the city faster, use the Internet for more detailed information. So, doctors in hospitals will receive information about patients from ambulance teams, firemen - will see the territory of fire from the helicopter. The police will be able to share video from cameras, turn their cars into access points, etc.

For the market

The emergence of new technology will spur both the sale of terminals with support for 4G and the development of services, where this technology is needed. Of course, users will begin to spend more, but to receive more also. 4G - this is watching the video on the go, and playing games, etc. Operators have already begun to introduce the heavy services to their subscribers, such as audio and video streaming, for example, due to non-tariffing traffic on Megogo, Youtube, their own services. Some offer unlimited traffic, others - up to 10 GB per month for free. According to Ivan Shestakov, marketing director of Megogo in Ukraine, 10 GB a month it's not enough to watch online video. But if you look at the volume of traffic consumption by Ukrainian subscribers, 10 GB is a lot. In next-generation networks, traffic costs will increase, which will stimulate the appearance of paying subscribers and the development of services.

For the country

World Bank studies show that the penetration of high-speed Internet and economic development are closely linked. According to the source, with an increase in the number of connections to high-speed Internet by 10%, economic growth is 1.3%.

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