All info about the 5G and 5G bands offered by JIO, Airtel, and Vi. Will Your Smartphone support it? | Jio Airtel and Vi 5G bands, smartphone support, Click to know more

A lot of people are confused about the 5G and 5G bands offered by mobile networks. This article is going to clear all your doubts.

Airtel launched its 5G in 8 cities in India, Including Delhi, Siliguri, Varanasi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Mumbai, & Chennai. However, the list is expected to expand later in the year and in the first quarter of 2023. Airtel became the first company to launch 5G in India. Jio and VI are also planning to launch the 5G nationwide.

As per Jio’s official website Jio True 5G is available in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Varanasi available with the Jio Welcome Offer, let’s discuss the 5G in detail and you will have a better understanding of 5G and its bands, what SA and NSA, etc.

Standalone and Non-Standalone Architecture 5G

Network companies are talking a lot about NSA and SA. While Airtel has NSA 5G, JIO is working on Standalone Architecture 5G. Let us discuss each of them in detail :

Non-Standalone 5G

The network based on Non-Standalone 5G is cost-efficient because it’s based on a 4G network because this architecture is using 4G core. But the main disadvantage of this network is that this is not a pure 5G network, sure it will give you good speeds, which a normal user would appreciate, and voice calls will be done via a 4G LTE network, also there will be latency issues as well.

The advantage of this network is that it can be expanded frequently as compared to Standalone 5G because this is built on an existing 4G network, cost-effective for the brand and plans could be cheaper on this network but that’s just my assumption.

Both Airtel and VI will use Non-Standalone 5G network.

Standalone 5G

Jio is the only network that is coming with the Standalone 5G architecture. It is a pure 5G network, built from scratch. You can have voice calls over 5G which is a great thing, the technology is called VoNR which can’t be done on an NSA network. There are no latency issues. Since Jio is using two 5G bands n28 and n78 career aggregation will be possible on Jio. Which is not possible on the NSA network. There will be support for MIMO as well if your smartphone supports this.

What is career aggregation?

Suppose your network supports two bands in one area, and your smartphone supports career aggregation, then your smartphone will aggregate both those bands and you will get more speed than on the smartphones that don’t support this. Think of it as a synergistic effect which means, two things mixed together to enhance the overall capability or effect.

5G Bands Explanation

There are mainly two categories, the first is sub-6 GHz(FR1) and the second is mmWave (FR2). As it is evident from the first name that sub-6GHz has a frequency of less than 6 GHz, and mmWave will have a frequency of more than 24GHz.

Sub-6 GHz(FR1)

The sub-6 GHz band is further divided into two parts: Low Band and the Mid band.

Low band works between 600 MHz to 2.4 GHz while Mid band frequency is between 3.0 to 6.0 GHz. The recent event where airtel launched its 5G was actually using mid band of 3500 MHz or 3.5GHz and the 5G bands used by airtel was n78 band.

Low band of 700 Mhz will be used by JIO to penetrate in small cities because the signal strength is going to be good. Jio will be using both n28 as well as n78 5G bands. As per the information available when the, the low 5G bands are going to have better connectivity than 4G. 5G will increase the connection density by approx 10 times as compared to 4G. Speeds might be anywhere around between 40 to 60 Mbps which is good because at the moment I am getting 4G speeds of 2 to 10 Mbps in daytime and even the videos start buffering at 480p sometimes.

It gets real when we talk about Mid bands. This is where you are going to see the real 5G speeds. At the event I noticed the speeds go to 850Mbps which is very huge jump if we compare to 4G. We might be getting speeds around 200mbps when it is available to the masses. Most important band for this is n78 which will be used both by Jio and Airtel.

mmWave Frequency 5G Band

mmWave is just pro version or premium version of 5G. This is not going to be launched in India for normal users though as its just too fast and it will be only confined to big businesses. This band will have speed in Gigabytes per second which is insane. Jio has shown interest in this, here is an article if you are interested.

This band works between 24 to 52GHz, and the problems with these is they don’t have good coverage strength, they need a line of sight. The signal strength will be hindered by walls, trees, even the bad weather so not a practical option to launch for masses.

5G Calling – VoNR

The VoNR network architecture is made up of a 5G RAN (Radio Access Network) and a 5G core. The VoNR eliminates the LTE anchor, allowing the call to remain on a 5G network from the UE to the core. By integrating 5G RAN, 5G Core, and IMS infrastructure, the VoNR makes them all work.

Will your Smartphone support it?

If you have smartphone is 5G yes, and has antennas to support the bands in provided by the mobile carrier. That is why please check for the bands before buying a 5G smartphone now. All the major smartphone brands support n78 band at least, even if it has only band it supports n78.

Checklist before buying a smartphone specifically for 5G:

  • Check for the bands, major 5G bands as of now are n78 (mid-band) and n28(low-band).
  • Check for the carrier aggregation, I have explained what is carrier aggregation in this article only.
  • If you need great calling support check for VoNR support.

As of now all major brands are working on pushing 5G updates to enable 5G connectivity on their smartphones, but remember you need to have physical antennas on the device, this is not a feature that can be enable without having 5G modem.

Samsung’s new devices are 5G ready, while they are pushing the updates for the older devices like Samsung s20 FE, or s21 FE, and they are expected to finish the roll-out by the end of November. Apple is still working on 5G updates as none of its device have 5G enabled at the moment, same is the case with pixel phones.

Motorola has rolled out 5G updates for its newly launched device Moto edge 30 fusion and Moto edge 30 ultra. I recently updated my moto edge 30 fusion with the same, but as of now my area doesn’t have any connectivity, If I get a 5G signal on my device I will try to post a review about the same. Motorola also said that they are working on a 5G update rollout on its older devices as well.


Airtel is going to cover the cities faster than its competitor jio as they are working on NSA 5G network which can be installed on 4G towers itself, while jio is working on building a pure 5G infrastructure from the scratch. Each one has its advantages and disadvantages. But I think JIO is going to be ready when 6G comes as they will have 5G infrastructure ready and 4G technology may become redundant by then. that’s just my crazy brain thinking unnecessarily xD.

For you reading my articles, remember 5G checklist before buying a 5G smartphone. Also keep in mind that NSA 5G network will consumer more energy compared to Standalone 5G, one thing to keep in mind before opting for a 5G network provider.

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I also have made a list of few 5G smartphones 1st here and 2nd here. If you wish to buy do visit this link.

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