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Forget 4G: Samsung claims 5G smartphone breakthrough

  • Samsung Galaxy Note S IV

    The Samsung Galaxy Note 8, a new tablet from the Korean company that sports a pen for writing on the screen. (AP Photo/Samsung)

  • Samsung Galaxy Lineup

     (Samsung)

Samsung Electronics said Monday it has made a breakthrough in developing mobile technology for fifth-generation networks, though it expects it will take years until the service is brought online for subscribers.

The South Korean company said it has found a way to transmit large volumes of data using a much higher frequency band than conventional ones in use, which would eventually allow users to send massive data files at a much faster speeds through their mobile devices, “practically without limitation.”

The technology could easily gain fans among phone users routinely sending and receiving large amounts of data. With 5G networks, for example, users would be able to send super-high-definition movie files in a matter of seconds, according to Samsung.

The fastest wireless technology in operation – 4G or long-term evolution – has yet to be widely adopted world-wide, and the next immediate phase for the standard is likely to be a shift to “4.5G” networks, analysts say. Many networks still employ 3G.

Samsung has eyes on commercializing 5G technology by 2020, matching a recently set target by the European Union. The EU announced earlier this year a plan to invest 50 million euros in research to deliver 5G mobile technology by 2020.

Many mobile operators are still transitioning to 4G wireless technology and they would have to be as swift in deploying the next-generation wireless data networks for the transition to 5G to materialize as planned, analysts note.

“The competition for technology leadership in next-generation mobile communications development is getting increasingly fierce,” and Samsung “believes it will trigger the creation of international alliances and the timely commercialization of related mobile broadband services,” the company said.

Get more tech news and reviews at The Wall Street Journal.

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