The United States and Poland believe suppliers of 5G network equipment should be rigorously evaluated for foreign government control, a joint declaration signed on Monday said, as Washington pressures allies to exclude China from 5G networks.
As 5G wireless technology is slowly making its way across the globe, many government agencies and organizations advise that there is no reason to be alarmed about the effects of radiofrequency waves on our health. But some experts strongly disagree.
Emerging economies should not sit out investing in 5G just because the US and China are competing head on in the next-generation mobile network technology, as the ultrafast telecoms infrastructure will bring benefits to all, according to a Cisco executive. “[Smaller countries] sometimes don’t feel like they can win. But emerging economies can benefit … they [should] invest and compete,” Guy Diedrich, global innovation officer at Cisco, said in an interview last week in Hong Kong. “We have to change the notion that 5G is a sprint and only one winner is going to emerge.”
Closing the broadband gap has proved tricky because private internet providers often don’t have financial incentives to build broadband infrastructure over long distances in sparsely populated areas. Some technologists believe the super-fast next generation of wireless technology, 5G, could provide a solution. But there are many skeptics who worry that the same business model issues will leave rural America out, possibly widening the digital divide.
The bill, from U.S. Representative Michael McCaul of Texas, presses the secretary of state to boost the "representation and leadership" of the United States at international telecommunication organizations that create standards for the 5G cellular network. That will be necessary to combat attempts by China to gain influence in those groups, the legislation says.
Despite a lot of press in recent months about threats that China-based communications equipment maker Huawei may pose to the developing global 5G communications ecosystem because of the company’s close ties to the Chinese government, the U.S. is continuing to lead the world in 5G technology innovation, panelists at a Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) event said on July 10.
The U.S.-China space race accelerated with Amazon applying to launch 3,236 5G and 6G satellites into orbit, following the U.S. Federal Commission Communication’s (FCC’s) approval for SpaceX launching 4,425 satellites. President Trump responded in February to China beating America to launch the first 5G broadband networks, in the same manner President John F. Kennedy responded to the Soviet Union’s beating America to launch the first Sputnik satellite. Trump declared an all-out space race to dominate the future for 5th and 6th generation mobile technology.
The newest craze in tech is 5G wireless speeds. All the major carriers are racing to be the first to upgrade their coverage speed, investing up to $1 trillion to develop infrastructure for nationwide 5G by 2020. But while our nation focuses on developing cutting-edge cell speed, we’re leaving behind a far more important need: preparing our students for the new economy.
As the first half of 2019 came to a close, every major cellular carrier in the United States was officially offering 5G service to customers: Just days after blasting rivals AT&T and Verizon for lying about their limited 5G offerings, T-Mobile commenced initial service on June 28, becoming the last U.S. national carrier to launch 5G.
If you’re a consumer, the 5G horizon seems to be getting closer by the day as vendors begin shipping 5G-capable handsets and telecom operators refine their buildout plans. But as the pace gradually quickens, one thing is clear: The transition to 5G won’t look anything like 3G and 4G migrations. To a certain extent, 5G will expand the speed-and-performance curve just as 3G and 4G did. And sure, we’ll have fancy new 5G phones in a couple of years, but we’re not where the real action is going to be. Because this isn’t going to be a consumer revolution at all.