Big Surprise: Verizon's Nationwide 5G Speeds Are Slower Than Its 4G LTE Network

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5G has been the biggest buzz word in the mobile industry. However, it really does have its advantages. But, Verizon’s “nationwide 5G” speeds can actually be slower than its 4G LTE speeds. As reported by PCMag Verizon’s “nationwide 5G” may be seriously slowing down the new shiny iPhone 12. Android users aren’t exempt from this either. Devices like the Google Pixel 5 and Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra will see slower speeds too.

So what can users do to stop this? It’s pretty simple. Just turn off 5G on your device if you can. Now you may be wondering why 5G is slower than 4G. Verizon has America’s fastest mobile network. This network is made up of two systems.

It is comprised of a 4G LTE network which gets faster year after year. Then there is the 5G network which is a high-capacity millimeter wave-based technology dubbed “ultra-wideband” (UWB). Their 4G LTE generally outperforms T-Mobile’s and AT&T’s low-band 5G in terms of speeds.


Verizon’s “nationwide 5G” speeds are a bit deceptive

The problem with UWB is that it does not reach nearly as far as the competitions’ low-band 5G. This means Verizon’s super-fast 5G isn’t available to as many customers as its competitors. Verizon made a move to win back some ground in the 5G marketing war.

In October, Verizon announced their “nationwide 5G” on stage at the iPhone 12 launch event. The new “nationwide 5G” network is based on dynamic spectrum sharing (DSS). This technology repurposes parts of 4G channels for 5G.

This sounds like the best option to extend their 5G reach, but it is not. Many customers want to see 5G pop up on their devices. You will get that 5G symbol, but it will come with slower speeds. The “nationwide 5G” frequency is slower than 4G and rarely faster. Since 5G devices automatically prefer 5G networks over 4G this means you receive slower speeds.


Since Verizon’s “nationwide 5G” doesn’t use dedicated channels for 5G traffic like their UWB it doesn’t live up to true 5G speeds. Now, Verizon’s UWB continues to expand its coverage but its range is short. As a result, if you have UWB coverage in your city, you still may not receive the signal. Depending on how far away you live from the cellular tower.

So, there are no real advantages of having the 5G signal appear on your Verizon 5G capable device. The signal you want to see is the 5G UW symbol. This indicates you are on Verizon’s faster mmWave UWB 5G network. So what can you do to avoid faux 5G speeds that are slower than 4G LTE? Turn off 5G, and avoid being disappointed. Each device has different steps for turning off 5G.