4G Mobile Networks: The Pros and the Cons

4G replaced 3G for good reason but it's not without its flaws

Rainbow of colors from smartphone
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4G mobile networks all but replaced 3G networks in the first half of the 2010s. They brought with them unparalleled speed and efficiency, helping to elevate the market and undergird the mobile revolution.

Internet connectivity on mobile devices is now more necessity than luxury, but even the 4G standard is not without its downsides. In this article, we take a look at the pros and cons of 4G mobile networks.

Advantages
  • Much faster than 3G.

  • Improved privacy, security, and safety.

  • 30-mile overlapping coverage range.

Disadvantages
  • Access can be challenging for international travel.

  • Software and updates required for making 4G calls on competing carrier networks

Pros of 4G Mobile Networks

The most obvious advantage of the 4G mobile network is its amazing speed. Increased bandwidth leads to much faster data transfer speed, which is especially advantageous for mobile devices. Users of the 4G network get the advantage of superior, uninterrupted connectivity, especially for advanced tasks such as video calls and conferences. Users can stream music, ​videos, and movies at a much faster rate than ever before and can easily share information online.

4G networks offer much more coverage than other systems such as Wi-Fi, which forces users to depend on hotspots and local networks. Since 4G offers a coverage of 30 miles or more with overlapping network ranges, users can be assured of connectivity in most areas of the country.

One of the biggest problems with Wi-Fi networks is their security. This is especially true for mobile devices. 4G networks offer complete privacy, security, and safety. This is especially beneficial for corporate establishments, business people, and anyone who may hold sensitive information on their device.

4G networks are quite affordable. Of course, this type of connectivity is more expensive than traditional Wi-Fi networks, but it also has a lot more advantages.

There are lots of plans and equipment to choose from. Many mobile carriers also offer special introductory offers for new customers, which works out to be fairly reasonable.

Cons of 4G Mobile Networks

Subscribers' devices must have matching frequencies bands and settings for the local carrier or country, which can pose difficulties for anyone wishing to use their phone while traveling or visiting another country. For the same reason, switching carriers can be quite a chore. Network and software updates are routine and required to maintain service.

4G mobile networks use multiple antennae and transmitters, so users may experience poorer battery life for mobile devices compared with 3G. This would mean that they would have to use larger mobile devices with more battery power, in order to be able to stay online for longer periods of time.

In Conclusion

4G mobile networks, though advantageous, also comes with some drawbacks—namely that international travel with 4G devices can be a challenge. While this technology is in the early stages of being replaced by much advanced 5G technology, it will be in use for some time. Mobile carriers and users interested in investing in 4G would do well to analyze and understand its pros and cons before adopting this new technology.