5G phones are steadily growing in numbers, but the technology hasn’t yet become an essential feature across all regions. If you’re predominantly served by Wi-Fi all day or are satisfied with your 4G LTE speeds, chances are you switch off 5G when it’s not really needed. However, would you really disable a feature on a device you paid for?
That’s a thought experiment we recently gave our readers. We wanted to know if, under any circumstance, they leave on their phone’s 5G connectivity or switch it off during the day. Here’s how they polled.
Do you ever turn off 5G on your phone?
We received over 1,300 responses on this poll, but one choice received an overwhelming majority. Just over 50% of respondents do not turn off 5G on their devices under any circumstance. Perhaps these readers feel valid gains from the service or don’t know how to switch off 5G on their devices. Either way, it’s a surprisingly large portion, especially when considering the views expressed in the comments.
See also: The state of 5G — Hype versus reality two years later
Interestingly, several readers ensure that 5G is “always off.” 39.4% of readers admit to running their phones without 5G at all times. Presumably, these users don’t see the benefits of 5G or are in a region underserved by the technology.
Finally, just over 10% of readers switch off 5G only when they have a weak signal or low battery. Judging by the responses in the comments section, a wobbly signal seems to be a common reason to disable 5G.
- Yup yup yup: I have T-Mobile and use a Pixel 5. If I have 5G on I lose connection and spend most of the time trying to get the phone to connect. It’s nuts how it’ll show the 5G signal strong but nothing works. Spend hours a day turning on/off airplane mode restarting the phone. Easier to leave it as LTE preferred and not deal with it.
- Jeff Namhie: I never disable 5G. My Pixel 5 does it for me.
- AnySmarterIdRunLinux: I turned it off once — the day I got the phone.
- Lamar Taylor: I own the iPhone 12 Pro Max on Verizon and the GS21 Ultra as my business phone on AT&T. So far 5G is all hype and mostly false advertising…that’s if you can get a consistent 5G signal for more than 5 minutes. If you are driving, walking, or entering a building, don’t even bother with 5G cuz regular LTE will be faster. I actually turned off 5G on my iPhone to preserve battery life.
- Stanley Kubrick: I keep trying 5G on my OnePlus 8T on T-Mobile. I have good 5G reception…full bars. And web-based speed tests show 5g is faster than LTE. However, in real-world use when on LTE web pages load faster than on 5G. The battery lasts longer on LTE. Videos on YouTube do not buffer on LTE whereas they do at times on the “faster” 5G! So then, for now I just use LTE because it is still better in my opinion. I live just north of Houston TX, so I am in a very well saturated 5G area. Until it improves in real-world use it’s a no-go for me.
That’s it for this poll. Thanks for your votes and comments. If you have any further thoughts regarding 5G connectivity, be sure to drop them down below.