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It may have taken some time, but 5G is slowly starting to build momentum in the US. All major carriers now have nationwide 5G deployments covering at least 200 million people, with T-Mobile in the lead covering over 270 million people with its low-band network at the end of 2020. Verizon ended the year with a low-band network that covered 230 million, while AT&T's version reached 225 million. Next-generation networks from all the major carriers are set to continue to expand in the coming months, laying the foundation for advancements such as replacing home broadband, remote surgery, and self-driving cars that are expected to dominate the next decade. But with all that activity by competing carriers, there are myriad different names for 5G -- some of which aren't actually 5G. The carriers have had a history of twisting their stories when it comes to wireless technology. When 4G was just coming around, AT&T and T-Mobile opted to rebrand their 3G networks to take advantage of the hype. Ultimately the industry settled on 4G LTE. One technology, one name. Differing technologies and approaches for presenting 5G, however, have made this upcoming revolution more confusing than it should be. Here's a guide to help make sense of it all. When it comes to 5G networks, there are three different versions that you should know about. While all are accepted as 5G -- and Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile have pledged to use multiple flavors going forward for more robust networks -- each will give you different experiences. The first flavor is known as millimeter-wave (or mmWave). This technology has been deployed over the course of the last two years by Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile, though it's most notable for being the 5G network Verizon has touted across the country. Using a much higher frequency than prior cellular networks, millimeter-wave allows for a blazing-fast connection that in some cases reaches well over 1Gbps. The downside? That higher frequency struggles when covering distances and penetrating buildings, glass, or even leaves. It also has had some issues with heat. Low-band 5G is the foundation for all three providers' nationwide 5G offerings. While at times a bit faster than 4G LTE, these networks don't offer the same crazy speeds that higher-frequency technologies like millimeter-wave can provide. The good news, however, is that this network functions similarly to 4G networks in terms of coverage, allowing it to blanket large areas with service. It should also work fine indoors. In between the two, mid-band is the middle area of 5G: faster than the low band, but with more coverage than millimeter wave. This was the technology behind Sprint's early 5G rollout and one of the key reasons T-Mobile worked so hard to purchase the struggling carrier.  The company has worked diligently since closing the deal, quickly deploying its mid-band network across the United States. The company now covers over 100 million people with the faster service, with a goal of reaching 200 million people before the end of 2021. T-Mobile has said that it expects average download speeds over the mid-band network to be between 300 to 400Mbps, with peak speeds of 1Gbps. While T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon have plenty of low-band spectrum, mid-band has previously been used by the military, making it a scarce resource despite its cellular benefits. Thankfully even with the name change in marketing and ads, the icons on phones and devices will remain the same. "Our customers will see a simple 5G icon when connecting to the next-generation wireless network, regardless of which spectrum they're using," said a T-Mobile spokesman. Complete details can be found on OUR FORUM.