Fourth Generation mobile telecommunication technology is the latest instalment in a series of mobile services, each better than the last. Before we look at how to tell whether your handset is 4G enabled or not we'll quickly recap the question ‘what exactly is 4G and what improvements does it bring from the 3G era?’.
The 4G network offers users unparalleled speed when accessing the web from a mobile, tablet or laptop, in fact the standard rate set for users averages speeds of 6mbit/s compared to 3G's 1mbit/s. This speed fluctuates between 5 to 7 times faster than before and is considerably closer to the speeds users will experience with home broadband packages. Due to this rather vast increase in speed users can expect a more reliable and much improved service when streaming, downloading and gaming. 4G also offers users a range of other services that have become second nature to modern living including HD mobile TV, cloud computing and video conferencing. To round off the numerous advantages 4G has over its predecessor, 4G offers a much wider ranging and more stable network than 3G, meaning your internet connection is stronger and will not slow down suddenly during use. In short 4G's main feature is an ultra-broadband internet service which is currently available on a range of smart phones and USB wireless modems.
How do you know if you have a 4G phone?
So the first thing to consider when establishing whether your phone is 4G enabled is whether or not it is a smart phone? If the answer is yes then it is simply a matter of how modern the model of the phone is. A handset which utilises a dual core processor is a good start with Samsung, HTC, LG, Nokia and Motorola all offering examples of 4G capable phones which meet the above criteria. Sony and the Apple iPhone series also have models which are 4G enabled and capable, with the trend set towards all major new releases in the smart phone industry to be 4G compatible in the future.
Is your phone 4G enabled?
One way of discovering whether you are already online with 4G is to go in to the settings options on your phone handset and find the network type; this should tell you whether you are currently using 4G or whether you're still with 3G. If you're still really not sure you can always check your phone for the 4G symbol, if it's there it will often next to the signal strength bars, then it's needless to say you're looking at a 4G capable phone, it's important to note that it will only be present if you have both data enabled and Wi-Fi disabled. Wi-Fi needs to be disabled due to the fact that in most phones a Wi-Fi connection will automatically override a data connection.
If you're convinced your smart phone is 4G capable but doesn't seem to be 4G enabled there a number of steps that can be followed. Firstly a quick visit to an internet search engine can provide the answers on whether the area you are currently in is covered by the 4G network or not. Secondly, if it is make sure you're network preferences are set to the correct option, this step will vary for each make, model and network provider. Finally a service provider’s website will usually have some answers in the FAQ's section which will often prompt a user to dial their call centre and follow a series of automated menus to enable 4G in the device.
Is your phone 4G enabled?
So a basic principle for discovering whether your phone is 4G capable and enabled is to first establish that it is a relatively modern device, possibly around a year old or newer and secondly to check the network settings in your handset configuration. Of course if you're really stuck a quick and effective method to get the answers you need is always to contact your service provider or handset supplier.
With the 4G network being the latest technology available and not to mention a vast improvement on the previous 3G network it is safe to say that until 5G is developed and made widely available all new smart phone model releases from reputable brands will be 4G enabled.