Trump says U.S. will win "race to 5G" as FCC announces record spectrum auction
Back in February, President Donald Trump sent out a tweet in which he wrote, "I want 5G, and even 6G, technology in the United States as soon as possible. It is far more powerful, faster, and smarter than the current standard. American companies must step up their efforts, or get left behind." As reported by CNBC, Trump today stuck to available technology and joined with the FCC in an attempt to quicken the pace of 5G deployment in the U.S.
Verizon recently flipped the switch on mobile 5G in Chicago and Minneapolis, and the network can be accessed using the Moto Z3 with the 5G Moto Mod. T-Mobile and Sprint will launch their 5G services later this year.Standing next to his handpicked FCC chairman Ajit Pai, Trump said that the U.S. must win the race to 5G. The president boasted that by the end of the year, 92 markets in the U.S. will support 5G compared to 48 in South Korea. AT&T already offers mobile 5G by invitation in 19 markets through the use of the Netgear Nighthawk 5G mobile hot spot.
5G data speeds are up to ten times faster than 4G LTE speeds and will eventually help birth new companies and services. For example, 4G LTE networks helped create the ride-sharing industry, which has turned Uber and Lyft into multi-billion dollar companies. With 5G, a movie that takes minutes to download on your phone will load in seconds.
Also this afternoon, the FCC announced the largest auction of spectrum in U.S. history. Starting on December 10th, carriers will be allowed to bid on "3,400MHz of Upper 37 GHz, 39GHz, and 47 GHz Bands." The agency said that the auction is "critical to ensuring U.S. leadership in 5G." The last major auction held by the FCC was completed a couple of years ago when T-Mobile purchased 31MHz of low-frequency 600MHz spectrum.
FCC chairman Pai said that the agency wants to create a $20.4 billion Rural Digital Opportunity fund. The money would be used to help 4 million homes and businesses employ high-speed broadband in rural America. He also took the opportunity to discuss Huawei. The U.S. has been warning allies that the global leader in networking equipment could be asked to spy for the communist Chinese government at any time. The chairman said, "We believe that the security and reliability of 5G is absolutely important, not just as a matter of national competitiveness, but also as a matter of national security." He pointed out that U.S. allies understand the importance of having a secure 5G network, and "the risk profile of certain equipment and services."