Should you buy a 5G laptop right now?

The Lenovo Flex 5G is available now and more 5G-enabled laptops are on the way, but you might want to think twice before snapping one up.

Credit: Ben Patterson/IDG

If you’re pining for a laptop with jaw-droppingly fast 5G download speeds, the future is now. The Lenovo Flex 5G is available right now through Verizon, and more 5G-capable laptops are on the way. But is now the right time to buy one?

Sure, the idea of a 5G-enabled laptop is tempting. During my tests with the Flex 5G, I managed to get download speeds between 381Mbps and 476.7Mbps, with upload speeds in the 50Mbps range. That pretty much blows away the throughput on my home Wi-Fi network.

Of course, you’ll only get those astounding 5G download speeds if you’re in a Verizon 5G coverage area, and as of now, they’re hard to come by. While AT&T and T-Mobile offer much broader 5G coverage, their slower but longer-range sub-6GHz 5G networks aren’t nearly as fast as Verizon’s speedier but (much) shorter-range mmWave 5G network.

You should also consider the limited number of 5G-capable laptops currently on the market. For now, the Snapdragon 8cx 5G-powered Lenovo Flex 5G is your only choice, but a few more 5G laptops will soon arrive from the likes of Dell, HP, and Samsung, and CES will surely bring a parade of options. And if you can wait a year or so, you should also be able to enjoy that fast 5G connectivity in broader coverage areas. 

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Ben Patterson, Melissa Riofrio

PC World (US online)
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