Who doesn’t want faster access to the internet when out and about? The next generation of mobile internet, 5G — short for “fifth generation” — is on the way, and it’s bringing exceptional data download and upload speeds with it.
But there’s still a long way to go until 5G is as ubiquitous as the widely available 4G, and we’re still taking our first baby steps into a faster future. Whether you think we need 5G or not, we’re seeing more and more manufacturers picking up the new standard — and the first commercially available 5G phones are out now. Here is every phone that supports 5G, and a whole bunch of rumors about some that might.
We saw an awful lot of 5G phones at MWC 2019, so check out those stories for more information on the next generation of mobile tech.
There is absolutely no doubt Apple will pick up 5G eventually, the only question is “when?” At the moment, the whispers indicate that the iPhone giant won’t be looking to release a 5G iPhone until 2020 — so expect 5G capabilities on the iPhone XIS, or whatever numerically nightmarish name Apple adopts.
This is no surprise, really. Apple can be slow to adopt new technology, just look at how long it took for it to adopt wireless charging and water-resistance. That’s not because Apple is lazy — far from it. Instead, Apple will likely only include the standard once it’s sure it works well and is not a waste of time. Being in a dominant market position, Apple can afford to wait.
Apple phones rumored to support 5G
- iPhone 2020
There haven’t been any rumors from Google about a 5G update for the Pixel range but it’s early days yet. If Google sticks to its usual schedule, we won’t be seeing the Pixel 4 until October 2019.
The Pixel 4 range will likely include the Snapdragon 855, a chip that’s capable of supporting 5G connections, so 2019’s Pixel 4 range may support 5G, but we won’t be surprised if it doesn’t. We’ll keep this updated as more details emerge.
HMD Global (Nokia)
Like a few other manufacturers, there has been no word on when Nokia handsets will support 5G. However, Nokia has been very active in helping to build up 5G infrastructure and is involved with the city of Tokyo to provide 5G networks in time for the 2020 Olympics. In July 2018, T-Mobile also announced it was working with Nokia to help build a U.S. 5G network. Nokia could also make $3.50 for every single 5G phone released, thanks to its work on the standard.
While HMD Global, the manufacturer of Nokia branded phones, hasn’t yet let rumors slip that it’s working on a 5G phone, we can’t imagine it will be too long before we hear about one.
While Honor will likely be working closely with sister company Huawei, that hasn’t halted its ambition to beat its bigger sibling to the finish line in launching a phone with 5G support. While Honor was originally intending to be the first phone company to release a full 5G phone, it has pushed its schedule back to the second half of 2019.
At the moment, it’s likely any 5G phone will be a flagship-level device. We’ll keep you updated as news rolls in.
Honor phones rumored to support 5G
- Unnamed Honor phone
There’s been little on HTC’s 5G plans, but the latest rumors say we’ll be seeing a 5G HTC smartphone in the second half of 2019 at the earliest. We’ve no idea which phone this would be, though the HTC U13 would be the obvious pick. HTC was confirmed to be one of the companies working with Qualcomm to bring 5G support to 2019 handsets, and you can expect HTC to implement the tech well.
While we still haven’t seen a 5G phone from HTC yet, it has released a 5G hub your phone can use to connect to a 5G network.
Huawei has made no secret of its ambitions for 5G, and first spoke about a handset with 5G support in February 2018. Back then, 2019 was the target date for release, and Huawei has hit that with the release of the folding, 5G-capable Huawei Mate X. As previously mentioned, including both of 2019’s biggest trends — 5G and folding phones — in a single device is a huge coup for Huawei, and may pay dividends for the Chinese company.
Huawei phones that support 5G
- Huawei Mate X
- Huawei Mate 20 X 5G
LG was hot out of the gate, and teamed up with Sprint to deliver the LG V50 ThinQ in early 2019, becoming one of the first 5G devices to hit the market. In fact, LG was so keen to get in on the 5G trend that it pushed the V50 ThinQ out a lot earlier than expected, with the phone landing on 20 June. With the V-range more usually being a fall release, that’s quite the jump.
LG phones confirmed to support 5G
Motorola is in something of a unique position on this list because not only has it already released multiple phones with 5G capabilities, it’s also updating previous phones with 5G connectivity through a special Moto Mod. The Moto Z4 and Moto Z3 use Motorola’s Moto Mod attachment to add a 5G power pack accessory onto the back of the phone, making it possible to access 5G networks. The Moto Z2 Force, a 2017 flagship, will also get access to 5G through the mod after its Android Pie update — but only Verizon models will get that update.
Motorola was technically the first company to release a 5G phone, but its modular nature means most people didn’t count it as the first 5G phone released. But it does mean Motorola has shown its hand in terms of 5G, and we can expect to see even more 5G connectivity hitting Motorola phones in 2019 and beyond. While Motorola already has the most phones with 5G access, don’t expect it to slow down any time soon — expect a Motorola phone with built-in 5G to arrive eventually.
Motorola phones that support 5G
After some conflicting reports, the existence of a 5G-enabled OnePlus phone has been confirmed. Like many other manufacturers, OnePlus’ first 5G phone is a specific variant of one of its flagships. In this case, it’s a OnePlus 7 Pro equipped with a 5G modem.
Rumors that the OnePlus 7 Pro 5G would be more expensive have turned out to be true, with the 5G phone costing a hefty 69 British pounds a month (about $87) for 30GB of data, and 50 pounds up front (about $63). That’s a pretty hefty slice of cash, even if the phone does come with 256GB of storage space and 8GB of RAM. It’s also only available in the U.K. and Finland at the moment, and there’s no sign of it in the U.S. yet. Still, our Andy Boxall spent some time with it in London, and you can check out his in-depth thoughts.
Unfortunately, OnePlus’ first 5G phone wasn’t available in the U.S. — until now. Rumors of a Sprint-OnePlus 5G partnership have borne fruit, and the OnePlus 7 Pro 5G will be coming to the U.S. in early September. Sprint stores in cities with Sprint’s 5G will get early access to the device from August 27. Prices start from $20/month and $0 down for a limited time.
OnePlus phones that support 5G
OnePlus phones expected to support 5G
- OnePlus 7T Pro 5G
Oppo made waves by claiming an Oppo phone was the first to access a 5G network. According to a claim made by Oppo global vice president Brian Shen, the connection was made on a pre-commercially available phone based on the Oppo R15 design, although we hear Oppo may be retiring the R series, so its 5G device is unlikely to be an R branded one. Oppo also claims to have held a WeChat video call using 5G.
Oppo took to MWC 2019 to proclaim it was working on adding 5G to a model of the Oppo Find X. However, there’s since been no word on when this phone is to be released. But Oppo hasn’t been resting on its laurels — the Oppo Reno 5G was released in the U.K. on June 7.
Oppo phones that support 5G
Oppo phones rumored to support 5G
- Oppo Find X 5G
Samsung is the largest mobile manufacturer in the world, and it would be silly to expect it to sit back and ignore the 5G bandwagon. Despite saying the S10 wouldn’t be Samsung’s first 5G device earlier in 2019, the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G has been launched as Samsung’s first 5G phone. It’s a beast of a device, with a 6.7-inch Dynamic AMOLED display and powerful specs. The Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G is the second 5G phone Samsung has released, despite hopes that it would be the Samsung Galaxy Fold.
Samsung announced a new focus on its midrange phones in 2018, and it has underlined that with the introduction of a 5G version of the midrange Galaxy A90. That said, we don’t know the price yet, so it could still be an expensive 5G phone — like the OnePlus 7 Pro 5G.
Samsung phones that support 5G
There has been next to nothing on the 5G front from Sony, so we have no idea when a 5G Xperia smartphone might be released. However, Sony is on Qualcomm’s list of 5G partners, so you might see one in 2019.
Xiaomi phones that support 5G
News from late 2018 said ZTE had to delay its first 5G phone until late 2019, so it was a surprise to see ZTE drop the Axon 10 Pro 5G into the ring at MWC 2019. It’s a true flagship phone with the Snapdragon 855 and various A.I.-powered systems inside. The Axon 10 Pro 5G released in Europe and China in May 2019. ZTE’s sub-brand Nubia also announced a 5G phone recently: The Nubia X. It’s unknown when this will launch, but it’s likely to be released in China first.
ZTE phones that support 5G
- Axon 10 Pro 5G
- Nubia X 5G
Updated on September 5, 2019: The Samsung Galaxy A90 5G is Samsung’s latest 5G phone.
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- 5G phones to be cheaper in 2020 as Qualcomm expands support for Snapdragon chips