Galaxy S10 5G’s insane Verizon knowledge speeds restore my religion in 5G

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See Galaxy S10 5G’s jaw-dropping real-world speeds


Four hours, seven cell websites and dozens of exams later, Verizon’s 5G knowledge community and Samsung’s Galaxy S10 5G achieved what I assumed was inconceivable: they made me enthusiastic about 5G once more. The costly new cellphone (it prices $1,300) and fledgling community nonetheless face hurdles in bringing this new expertise to the plenty. Things may nonetheless get messy. But after seeing persistently quick real-world and benchmarking exams, the 5G future we hold listening to about — the one which guarantees ludicrously quick downloads, real-time sports activities and pin-sharp on-line video games — does not really feel as pie-in-the-sky because it did six weeks in the past after I got here to Chicago to check Verizon’s then-day-old 5G community


This is what I am speaking about.

Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

My experiences had been night time and day. A month and a half in the past, Verizon’s community launch was rocky. The Moto Z3 and 5G Moto Mod mortgage unit I used to check the community on ran out of battery, and whereas Speedtest.web confirmed quick speeds, it took 6 minutes to obtain a big file that yesterday took me underneath 2 and a half. Another time yesterday afternoon, I downloaded a Netflix film in simply over eight seconds. 

5G knowledge speeds symbolize a profound shift for the trade, promising exponentially quicker obtain speeds in your cellphone, which may make AR and new digicam options come to life. The ultrafast knowledge switch additionally paves the best way for next-generation capabilities together with distant surgical procedure, linked safety cameras and automobiles and buses that speak to one another on the street to cut back accidents and assist hold lanes clear. Carriers that may construct out essentially the most sturdy networks first imagine they’re going to have a bonus over rivals for signing on new subscribers.

So what went proper for Verizon and Samsung this time and why, and what does all of this imply for you — must you run out and purchase a 5G cellphone? Hang tight and I am going to break all of it down.

Galaxy S10 5G knowledge exams broke the 1Gbps barrier

I took a loaner Galaxy S10 5G that Samsung had preloaded with an account and apps like Speedtest.web, Amazon Prime Video and Netflix out into Chicago for testing. Because protection is restricted to particular areas the place Verizon has arrange its 5G community nodes, we could not simply go wherever we needed. 

For instance, you may’t use 5G sign most locations indoors (Verizon’s retailer on Michigan Avenue is one exception). But we did hit seven areas round downtown. 


That 5G icon is way improved. Six weeks in the past it flickered on and off, making you doubt you had been locked onto 5G speeds.

Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

I ran no less than two speeds exams at every of those stops, each on the Galaxy S10 5G and on a 4G-only Galaxy S10 Plus, each on Verizon’s community and each utilizing the Verizon Speedtest.web server. Speeds persistently ranged from 400Mbps up previous 1Gbps, hitting these peaks in 4 completely different areas (oftentimes, however not all the time, greater than as soon as). 

While obtain speeds are 5G, add speeds are nonetheless in 4G ranges, which Verizon is nicely conscious of. 

“With the state of the software and where it was, we just needed to see very good reliability,” Verizon’s community VP, Mike Haberman, advised journalists on a name forward of those Galaxy S10 5G exams in Chicago and Minneapolis. “With the NR uplink in the very early version of the software, we weren’t seeing that reliability…so it’s an evolution,” he stated, including that getting obtain speeds dependable was extra essential.

“When you think of 5G, you think of the download,” Haberman stated.

Read: Verizon makes use of mmWave 5G, however there are completely different sorts. Here’s what you must know

Holy shit, I simply downloaded Wine Country from Netflix on 5G (1 hour, 43 minutes) in simply over eight seconds. Night and day in comparison with my exams right here 6 weeks in the past #Verizon #GalaxyS105G @CNET

— Jessica Dolcourt (@jdolcourt) May 16, 2019

Real-world exams delivered mind-blowing speeds

Even extra spectacular and essential than these benchmarking speeds are the real-world exams of downloading motion pictures, TV reveals and enormous apps. It’s those who actually convey what will probably be wish to reside life in 5G. At one quick spot (and with a 4G cellphone serving as a stopwatch), I downloaded Season 2 of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (in 4K) from Amazon Prime Video in underneath 5 minutes. That’s roughly 10 hours of footage. The 4G cellphone took four minutes to complete downloading the primary episode.

At one other location, I downloaded and put in the 1.86GB sport PUBG in underneath 2.5 minutes on 5G. It took simply over three minutes on 5G, which nonetheless demonstrates a bonus since Google Play’s servers have not been optimized for Verizon’s 5G community, the provider stated. 

Similarly, an virtually 2-hour film (Wine Country) downloaded from Netflix in simply over eight seconds. The second try took barely longer, at 10.four seconds. After two makes an attempt to obtain over 4G, I gave up after the progress wheels didn’t advance two minutes into the obtain.

Verizon spokespeople recommended that Amazon Prime Video and Netflix have been optimized for its 5G community in various levels, one thing I’ve requested for readability on.

The startling real-world obtain outcomes are encouraging as a result of it implies that within the best-case community situation, you may obtain lightning quick obtain speeds (it stormed throughout our exams, so there was precise lightning). It’s clear that Verizon has labored to tune its community. Ahead of as we speak’s take a look at, Haberman stated to count on improved efficiency, however not improved protection, although that is coming as nicely. 

“You’ll easily see a doubling of sites in the next month,” Haberman stated over the cellphone, whereas additionally emphasizing Verizon’s dedication to launching 5G in 30 US markets by the top of 2019

Read: How to see 5G networks the place you reside

A phrase on the Galaxy S10 5G’s battery life

At 10 a.m., the Galaxy S10 5G began at 100% battery. By 2 p.m., it was at 53%, and at three:30 p.m., it had dipped all the way down to 40%. That’s a steep decline on a tool with a four,500mAh battery. I believe the cellphone really did OK contemplating that I pummeled it nonstop with obtain requests and saved its 6.7-inch display screen on full brightness for 5 and a half hours.

 Verizon says it may well do higher. “You can count on [the phone’s battery life] to be augmented. That’s not one thing Samsung does,
 Haberman stated, “That’s one thing executed on the community.”

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We examined Verizon’s new 5G community


What makes this Verizon 5G take a look at completely different than the final

This take a look at with the Galaxy S10 5G gave us a lot better outcomes than our first take a look at utilizing Motorola’s Moto Z3, and there are quite a few causes for that.

Verizon has had 6 weeks to tune its communityThe Galaxy S10 5G has its personal 5G modem (Qualcomm X50), the place the Moto Z3 will get 5G knowledge via its magnetic Moto Mod.The 5G UWB brand (Ultra-wideband) is smaller and did not flicker as a lot, giving a extra secure indication of while you’re utilizing 5G knowledge (the icon drops again to 4G while you’re not utilizing 5G knowledge).Verizon set expectations on the place to face and what to anticipate (e.g., the candy spot is between 100 and 300 toes away inside line of sight of the 5G node).

The Galaxy S10 5G will ultimately come to carriers worldwide.

Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

Despite nice outcomes, 5G is not for everybody proper now

5G is an inevitability, however proper now we’re getting a curated sampler platter. The buffet is not fairly prepared. Here are the key points.

Network protection: There’s not sufficient to go round but and it is not clear what occurs when extra individuals come on board.Cost: 5G telephones price a whole bunch extra and you must count on to pay extra for a plan (Verizon suspended its $10 month-to-month surcharge for now).70% sign lack of Verizon’s mmWave kind of 5G via home windows and partitions, which implies you will not get it indoors if nodes are outdoors (almost all will probably be at the beginning).

This spherical of Chicago exams was definitely promising, nevertheless it’s good to do not forget that these next-gen “G” rollouts do not occur in a single day. This is a actuality that impacts each considered one of these fledgling networks. 

If cash is not any object and also you’re craving to be prepared when 5G comes on board in your space, the S10 5G is a large-screen cellphone with confirmed efficiency (it shares core options with the Galaxy S10 Plus). The remainder of us ought to see these first telephones and networks as a place to begin that may turn into extra sturdy and compelling with time. 5G will probably be up and coming for years whereas the carriers and phone-makers work out the kinks. Most of us should be affected person. 

Originally printed May 16, eight:46 a.m. PT and up to date all through the day.