Amid the coronavirus scare, people are faced with other real and perceived threats, the latest one being the question of whether 5G is hazardous to one’s health. We have done a bit of research and will, hopefully, shed some light on the matter. So, is 5G dangerous?
What Is 5G?
5G is the fifth generation of wireless networks that was in development since 2008. It is not only faster than the current 4G network, being able to transfer data 4 times faster on average, but works with higher frequencies as well. It can also process data at greater speeds than its predecessor, which is likely going to revolutionize streaming services.
Another perk is that the latency, or data loss in the transfer, drops significantly with the 5G mobile network. The applications grow beyond streaming movies and playing demanding games, as this technology may be instrumental in the development of self-driving cars. The only reported downside is a larger number of towers, as the signal, reportedly, degrades faster than that of 4G.
Does It Cause COVID-19?
The most popular conspiracy theory is possibly the result of launching the 5G network around the time the world plunged into the COVID-19 pandemic. 5G is merely the fifth generation of wireless networks, designed to make data transfer faster, easier, and able to perform under a lot more stress than the previous generations. Concerns have been voiced about the possible correlation between 5G launch and coronavirus cases.
However, the timelines do not coincide with one another, as the network began its deployment in major countries in April 2019. The first reported case of COVID-19 was in China in January 2020. The second reason this claim should not be taken seriously is the fact that COVID-19 is a virus and viruses are not caused by wireless technology. The feelings and logic behind these claims likely stem from fear and distrust towards new technologies, science in general, and governments in the time of crisis.
The rational concern regarding 5G may be found in its radiation. One could argue that even minuscule doses of radiation we get from using our computers and phones on a regular basis could present a risk of developing tumors. It is easy to see where these claims could come from, but, at the time of writing, there have not been any confirmed cases of cell-phone radiation causing cancer.
Unfortunately, the risk of prolonged exposure to 5G cannot be disproven either. This does not mean that 5G causes issues, but that we lack the time and resources to do proper studies and testing. Remember that the development of this technology and its deployment have been in the works for years and that the parameters of testing need to be pushed to their limits to get any definitive answer and even then there are no guarantees.
This is the reason testing of 5G was temporarily halted in several countries in 2019, including Belgium and Switzerland. The testing was slowed down in order to conduct more tests after several groups voiced their concerns over the new technology.
It would be irresponsible to claim that the radiation that comes from the 5G network is absolutely safe or that it would cause health issues. What we can say at this time is that the general consensus is that the network is safe to use. The reason for having no definitive answer is simple – there is no way of telling what effects the current technology is going to have on our health 50 years from now, especially if the exposure surpasses the recommended and legal levels. For now, the majority of studies and world governments are in agreement that 5G is nothing to be scared of.