T-Mobile is trying to make 5G less confusing by adding a new 5G UC icon to let users know when they are using real 5G.
While many network providers already show 5G on many of their phones, this often isn’t "true 5G." On Wednesday, T-Mobile announced plans to add a new 5G UC icon to let you know exactly when your phone is connected to a proper 5G connection.
The new icon will appear whenever users with an iPhone 13 or iPhone 13 Pro/Pro Max are connected to T-Mobile’s 5G Ultra Capacity network instead of its "regular 5G network."
T-Mobile's Ultra Capacity network will offer the faster speeds that many users have come to expect from 5G, while non-adorned 5G icons will let users know they are connected to the previously existing network.
This other 5G network is simply a different band than the Ultra Capacity, and it offers speeds more akin to those of LTE speeds—which have been in use through 4G and LTE networks for years now.
T-Mobile also appears to have plans to roll that icon out to other phones in the future, but it’s starting with the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro for now.
This is presumably due to the new band support that Apple offers in the updated iPhones, which it says will be available to even more customers and networks than ever before.
While the new icon might make 5G a little more confusing for users, at least for a bit, differentiating between when you are connected to the fastest bands will allow consumers to ensure they are getting the coverage they were promised.