What Is 5G Technology?

As T-Mobile and Sprint announce their merger and T-Mobile CEO John Legere believes their union is necessary for the US to compete with China on 5G, we took a look at what exactly 5G is and what it means for you.
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T-Mobile (TMUS) - Get Report and Sprint (S) - Get Report announced their merger and TheStreet's Scott Gamm spoke with both CEOs about the deal.

T-Mobile CEO John Legere said that the deal is an important way for the United States to compete with China on 5G and said the majority of the company's $40 billion investment in network technology over the next three years will be related to 5G.

But what exactly is 5G and why do we need it?

Well, if you want driverless cars and smarter smart homes, then you need 5G.

To start, driverless cars, like the ones Tesla (TSLA) - Get Report  is testing, need 5G so they can "talk" to other cars to improve safety and control traffic on our soon-to-be smarter roads.

Your super smart home needs 5G so all your appliances and devices can talk to each other faster.  So then you can turn on your car from your phone while you adjust the heat and turn off the lights on the way out the door. 

And of course your phone needs that 5G network so virtual and augmented reality finally will become the norm for all those movie downloads and great pics of the grandkids.

But speaking of your phone - let's take a step back.

The "G" stands for "generation" and the video above explains how it all started -- with 1G back in the 1990's!

But now, enter 5G now and everything is going to be way faster because it will allow huuuge amounts of data to be transmitted and billions of devices to be connected -- all in one click.

So what companies will benefit from this network explosion?  Jim Cramer says Broadcom (AVGO) - Get Report , one of the core holdings in his Action Alerts PLUS charitable trust, will benefit for sure.

Also watch companies like Intel (INTC) - Get Report , Qualcomm (QCOM) - Get Report , and Nokia (NOK) - Get Report .  And of course the carriers, like Verizon (VZ) - Get Report , AT&T (T) - Get Report and of course T-Mobile and Sprint now as they merge.

Plus we were the first to see the Verizon's 5G testing research center so watch this video now

Editors' Pick: Originally published on January 23, 2018.