The first 5G device was the Moto Z3 provided with Motorola’s 5G MotoMod, and my expertise — and that of many different tech journalists — was lower than optimistic: 5G protection was exceedingly troublesome to seek out. Speeds had been noticeably sooner than LTE, however not wickedly so.

However immediately marks the discharge of Samsung’s $1,400 Galaxy S10 5G, which can briefly be a Verizon unique earlier than shifting to different carriers. And now that there’s an actual, correct 5G cellphone on its community, Verizon has ramped issues up. Coverage stays extraordinarily restricted: it varies extensively and block by block.

However, once you discover a great spot, it’s beautiful. Obtain speeds on Verizon’s 5G community now really feel like a correct subsequent-gen leap over present LTE efficiency. Going over 700Mbps may be very typical, and crossing that gigabit marker can occur recurrently when you’re standing close to one of many service’s 5G nodes, which make the most of millimeter wave expertise to attain the sooner obtain charges.

Let me steadiness that pleasure a bit: 5G deployment goes to take years earlier than we hit the identical saturation and blanket protection that presently exists with LTE. Millimeter wave know-how alone isn’t going to be sufficient: indoor security on Verizon’s 5G community is principally nonexistent, and that’s a significant challenge. And for now, uploads are nonetheless restricted to LTE on Verizon’s 5G community. Tethering with the Galaxy S10 5G isn’t but supported (at 5G speeds), which is annoying.

Speeds drop rapidly as you stroll down the block from any 5G node, and the 5G sign is mainly gone when you lose line of sight. Bafflingly, the 5G icon solely seems when your phone is actively utilizing information. In any respect, in different instances, it shows 4G.