They are worse now, since we are at solar minimum at this time. An upturn? Probably late this year or early next year. The first sunspots than have been convincingly identified as Cycle 25 spots just appeared. One caution? 24 took a couple of years to crank up once it began. And as WN says, even at solar minimum you can work plenty of stations including DX. It's a time for good antennas, certainly, and a time for running more than 100 watts if you want to work phone. A good thing? All the tools we've got now to keep us alerted like PSK Reporter, the Reverse Beacon site, and all the spotter sites.