As with all mobile network upgrades, 5G has begun modestly, with Vodafone upgrading 100 sites around the main centres (1500 will be upgraded over the next two years) and only a handful of phones yet able to support the faster new mobile technology.
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But it's going to keep coming, like a steamroller, and change the way we connect to the internet.
At Vodafone's 5G launch in Wellington this morning, I managed to hit over 500 megabits per second - or five times the speed most people get from their UFB fibre at home - while connecting with the 5G version of Samsung's Note 10+.
That's stonking speed.
I also got huge speeds (well, 40Mbits was huge for the time) when 4G rolled out earlier this decade. Then, the maxim was true that I was like one of the first drivers to hit a new stretch of motorway. Things would choke up as more traffic arrived.
And there will be an element of that with the first wave of 5G.
But it very much is only the first wave. Although the initial rollout of 5G has been attractive enough to attract early adopters like the NZ Police, BNZ, Auckland's Rescue Helicopter and Waste Management.
With 4G, the technology was tweaked and squeezed (and is still been tweaked and squeezed), to eek out a bit more bandwidth.
But with 5G, we're very much at the bottom of the curve. We're going to see huge speed increases from here - increases that will make some ask if the $3 billion or so in public-private funds spent on UFB fibre will be quickly redundant.
Vodafone NZ launched its new mobile service today using its 53MHz slice of 5G-friendly 3.5GHz bandwidth (which it inherited with its TelstraClear purchase, making it the only carrier with a substantial 5G spectrum holding).
Vodafone has already been open about the fact it wants to top up to a 100MHz slice once the Government auctions more 3.5GHz spectrum next year - a Treaty challenge allowing - or allocates temporary spectrum.
Then, along with some standards upgrades, we'll be heading for "pure 5G", or the latest mobile spec being everywhere, and no 4G infill for uploads.
And Vodafone and Spark are both eyeing the "millimetric" 30GHz spectrum that is expected to be put on the table after 2022.
Vodafone technology director Tony Baird sees millimetric bands allowing 5G connections with 1 gigabit per second (1000 megabit per second) to head-spinning 10gbit/s bandwidth - faster than any fibre today.
In a few years' time, Baird sees Vodafone pairing millimetric 5G with roadside cabinet and cable assets inherited from TelstraClear so businesses in the Wellington CBD and Auckland CBD - plus light-industry suburbs like East Tamaki and Albany - can be offered 1 gbit/s or faster fixed-wireless 5G.
That's a mobile connection so fast that you could use it all around your office, and forget about wi-fi. Vodafone and others say licensed 5G spectrum will offer more speed, flexibility and consistency than unlicensed wi-fi - and that's been the experience of at least one early adopter in the industrial sector.
Way before that - probably within months - we'll see Vodafone start to aggressively offer fixed-wireless connections to households as a landline substitute. Baird - and new co-owner Infratil - has already flagged a headline goal to move up to a quarter of Vodafone NZ's base of around 420,000 landline customers to fixed wireless over the next two to three years.
Chorus - responsible for the lion's share of UFB fibre - is not taking this lying down.
The network provider says it will provide 2 gigabit per second and 4 gigabit per second UFB fibre plans for some South Islanders from February, followed by Auckland in May 2020 and a broader rollout to follow as part of its new "Hyperfibre" push.
Chorus chief customer officer Ed Hyde maintains that fibre will always stay a jump ahead, and will always benefit from its more bountiful bandwidth as radio engineers try to squeeze more from finite 5G bandwidth.
So who will be the winner? Customers, according to Telecommunications Users Association of NZ head Craig Young.
The Tuanz boss told the Herald earlier this month, "With the new 5G networks being rolled out, Chorus and the other fibre providers need to stay ahead of the offerings available on the new mobile networks, so I see this very much as being an outcome of competition that's pushing innovation.
"My view is that users will work out what is the best type of connectivity they need for the services they want. It's not an either/or but a choice of options," Young added.
"Competition in infrastructure is good."
Getting started with 5G
• A Vodafone mobile plan. All of the carrier's plans support 5G. You don't need a new plan or a new sim card. However, a high data cap or unlimited data plan is recommended.
• A phone that supports 5G. A 5G iPhone isn't expected until next year. Meanwhile, Vodafone is pushing Samsung's Galaxy A90 5G handset ($1399) and the 5G version of Samsung's Note 10+ ($2199).
• And you'll also have to been in one of the coverage areas in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown. See a coverage map here.
• There is no charge for 5G today, but Vodafone says it'll add a $10 surcharge from July. Watch for that to be dropped if Spark manages to hit its marks for a July 2020 5G mobile launch. 2degrees has yet to set a timetable for 5G.