The Race to 5G is Getting Fierce


Huawei is being investigated by the US Department of Justice for violating sanctions on Iran recently. The company is expected to be a competitive 5G technology supplier for its 5G patents and years of research. However, the investigation may affect the company’s 5G strategy negatively. Actually, it also implies America’s anxiety about China’s rise in high-tech industries – the core components of ‘Made in China’ 2025 plan. Not only China and the US are trying to take the lead in 5G market, other countries are also pursuing to take their place.

54 - The Race to 5G is Getting Fierce

5G is the inevitable trend and will be widely used in 2020s. The 5G communications network will improve various areas, including the smart devices, internet of things, autonomous vehicles and other technological advancements.

Firstly, smart devices users will get better user experience from 5G. The increased bandwidth enables people to use more of it without crowding out other users. And smart devices could run faster than ever before. As a result, it also contributes to related mobile business like ecommerce.

5G could benefit the new applications as well. As the ultra-reliable and low-latency communications will become the key part of new applications, 5G network aims to increase reliability and reduce latency to less than 1 millisecond, which is far more rapid than that of 4G. While the low-latency connections could make people control objects remotely, driverless car is just a good example.

Additionally, 5G is able to enhance experience of virtual reality, allowing people to chat in real time with live-streaming. And it makes the doctors to perform surgery remotely under the help of robot arm. It will give us more surprise than what we expect.

5G stands for a country’s technology strength to some extent, which drives the fierce competition across the world. Chinese government provides policy and financial support to the companies to develop 5G. And the Chinese companies have engaged in standardization working groups on 5G at the International Telecommunications Union which is significant to maintain the market share. Meanwhile, China will also draw lessons from the US sanctions against ZTE and Huawei, making efforts to research and develop technology to reduce over-reliance on foreign technology

As for the US, the Trump administration is said to consider nationalizing the 5G network. Because 5G could be closely related to national security. And a bill that allows the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to hold spectrum auctions required for 5G had been passed. While for mobile carriers like AT&T and Verizon had announced their plans to launch 5G in some cities in 2019.

The UK is also making efforts to develop 5G. British Telecom has just signed a huge investment deal with GCHQ to further 5G technology. But there is not provider in the UK could think about starting a 5G network now. Only when they get the 5G spectrum and the 5G standards is completed could they start the 5G network.

In the race to 5G, Australia enrolls its network carriers Telstra, Optus and Vodafone to form a 2019 5G fixed wireless service rollout time frame. It is estimated that mobile services market will enter the realm of 5G in 2019.

5G is a vital technology that brings cooperation and competition among the countries. Anyone who wants to lead the race needs to keep on developing the technology and take the competitive challenges into consideration.


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