General James Jones, who served as the U.S. national security advisor to president Barack Obama, says that China is ahead of the United States when it comes to the marketing of next-gen 5G networking equipment. According to CNBC
, the General was speaking at the Munich Security Conference and told those in attendance that the communist Chinese government subsidizes its domestic telecom companies. He says that this allows them to offer gear for 5G networks that is less expensive than similar technology developed in the states.
Leadership in 5G is important, and the General pointed out that the next generation in wireless will impact "all aspects of our society from banking to the medicine field, to the smart cities that we have ambitions for." 5G can provide peak data speeds up to 20 times faster than 4G LTE, allowing for the creation of new businesses and capabilities. Jones, who also served under President George W. Bush as the supreme allied commander of NATO forces in Europe, says that the 5G technology created in the U.S. will be more secure. It will allow citizens to have private phone conversations, allow corporations to protect their patents and make governments more secure.
"The competition is China and whoever wins this competition is going to be a very dominant player on the globe and China has a very seductive, appealing message: 'We're cheap, we're reliable, we don't put strings on our technology'...what they don't say is, 'we don't share our technology, we don't train you on our technology, we don't give you the keys, we don't give you the encryption and we won't partner with your domestic countries'"-General James Jones
The General made it clear that wireless providers around the globe have a choice to make. "You can either go for the cheap, seductive but extremely vulnerable system that will take all of your privacy, your intellectual property and your secrets back to Beijing. Or you can invest a little bit more money and have a more secure society," he said.