At least the US government and the entire wireless industry think so. Meredith Attwell Becker (Meredith Attwell Baker), the president and chief executive of wireless industry group CTIA, issued a warning in April that the United States will not have second more opportunities to win the global 5G competition. The group released the report that it is currently in the 5G network. In related fields, the US lagged behind China and South Korea. The report warns that if the situation remains unchanged, the US economy will be affected.
This report echoed a leaked document from the National Security Council. The document suggests that the U.S. government consider building a 5G network. The document said that if China occupies a dominant position in the telecommunications network industry, it will "win politically, economically, and militarily."
Democrats are also worried. Jessica Rosenworcele, the only Democrat at the Federal Communications Commission, wrote a column for TechCrunch earlier this year calling for a reinvigorated 5G strategy to stop China.
The first specification of the 5G standard was released last year, but other relevant standards will not be announced until later this month. Operators generally expect that the United States will not popularize 5G networks nationwide by 2020. The wireless industry promises that 5G networks will bring faster speed and reliability to mobile devices, reduce the gap in speed between wired and wireless broadband, and bring a wave of technologies and applications that we could not even imagine.
But why is it important for the United States to establish a 5G network before China? The advantages of 5G networks are obvious, but today's US home broadband speeds are also not the fastest, and 4G networks are not the fastest or most widely used, lagging behind countries such as Finland, Japan, and South Korea. What is the damage to the U.S. economy caused by the delayed deployment of 5G networks?
A widely cited report published by Accenture, a market consulting firm, in 2016 shows that the construction and maintenance of the US 5G network may bring 3 million jobs and 500 billion US dollars of GDP growth. But if China is the first country to have a nationwide 5G network, will all these jobs eventually flow overseas?
Sanjay Dharay, managing director of Accenture, who wrote the report, said that was not necessarily the case. "even if China wins the technology race to build a 5G network, it won't be a zero-sum game," he said.
Jeff Kagan, telecoms analyst Jeff Kagan, said the competition between the United States and China gave the United States an incentive to actively promote 5G networks. But he believes that if the United States is second or third in 5G networks, it will have a significant impact on the U.S. economy in the long run. "I think it's not just about which country is first in the industry," he said.
At present, the two economies still depend on each other. ZTE shut down almost all of its operations after the U.S. Department of Commerce issued a seven-year ban on sales. Even if China "wins" in the 5G network competition, U.S. companies will benefit from selling technology to China.
Roger Entnerer, co-founder of market analyst firm Recon Analytics, acknowledges that even if the U.S. launches 5G networks a few months later than China, it may not have much impact. Europe is rolling out 2G faster, while Japan was the first country to launch 3G networks, but that hasn't stopped Apple and Google from dominating the smartphone market. But if China leads the United States in 5G networks for a year or two, Entner said, it could damage the United States' ability to compete in global technology markets.
The United States began to launch 3G networks nationwide in 2002, which made it available in 2007.iPhoneAnd the growing market for related mobile applications is possible, said Chetan Sharma, a mobile industry consultant. 4G networks debuted in the United States in 2011, making smartphones and mobile apps more attractive. Partly because of this, apps such as Instagramo Uber and Lyft can reach critical mass one step ahead of competitors in other countries, giving the United States a competitive advantage.
Ultimately, it is the decisions of consumers and the private sector that determine the success or failure of technology. The United States "defeats" Europe and Japan because Apple has created a product that mainstreams smartphones, Google has built a popular mobile operating system and has it open source, and Facebook has established a platform for People can use mobile phones without restriction. It is worth noting that if China first provides widely deployed 5G network access services, its domestic companies will be one step ahead in creating the next generation of high-tech products and services.
Entner said that by contrast, the United States does not have to worry about small countries such as South Korea because Korean companies do not have much market to test and improve their creativity. But China’s 1.4 billion people provide a great place for a company to develop its business before going abroad. Take WeChat as an example, it provides users with mobile payment, online banking, taxi service and many other things. For years, Western technology companies have been trying to emulate its features and success models. Huawei is now the world's largest telecommunications infrastructure equipment supplier. It was originally developed by serving the domestic market.
Gaining the lead in 5 G networks could have other benefits for Chinese technology companies. 5 G network can not only improve the access speed, but also increase the capacity, which is helpful to support the development of the Internet of things. All connected cars and other gadgets generate more data. Such examples abound. That could help China take the lead in cutting-edge developments such as autonomous cars and artificial intelligence. Paul Trioloch of Eurasia Group, a political risk consultancy, which specialises in the technology industry, said: "the huge amount of data provided by the 5G network is critical to training artificial intelligence algorithms. So whether it's in the deviceDevelopmentIt is also a leader in application development and will be the goal of China or other countries. ”
Provide wireless spectrum
Entner said that the possibility of China leading the United States in terms of 5G networks for more than a year is real, because the United States has not yet allocated enough wireless spectrum for the new network. So far, most of the developments in 5G technology have focused on the “millimeter-wave spectrum,” which is a very high frequency range that can achieve extremely fast speeds but can only be achieved within a very small range. This will require operators to deploy a large number of small cellular antennas so that they can use the 5G network to cover the entire country.
Operators are lobbying the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to open up more IF spectrum resources for 5G networks, which will allow them to use large cell sites as they do today. This may make the deployment of 5G faster. What is worrying is that if it fails to provide operators with sufficient IF spectrum, 5G networks will not be able to cover the entire United States by 2020. The U.S. Federal Communications Commission plans to hold an auction in November to sell operators some rights to use the mid-frequency band. Last month, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission officially launched another related business process.
However, the longer this takes, the longer it takes for U.S. carriers to build a true 5G network. Entner said that in the history of the United States, after determining a new spectrum for a specific purpose, it often takes years to establish the first network.
In contrast, the Chinese government has opened up more intermediate-frequency spectrum resources that can be used to deploy 5G networks. This is one of the reasons why the CTIA report shows that China and South Korea "lead" the United States in terms of 5G networks.
National security concerns
The United States is also worried that China’s leading position in 5G will affect US national security. Huawei's products are now used by operators around the world. However, the U.S. government has been worried that Huawei will affect U.S. national security. Huawei has actually been shut out by the U.S. government. However, if U.S. and allied telecommunications equipment companies withdraw from the market, U.S. operators may have no options other than Huawei.
U.S. operators will continue to circumvent Huawei's products and use equipment from US companies such as Cisco and Juniper, or choose equipment from Ericsson and Nokia in Europe. However, this does not have much effect on challenging Huawei's global position.
For the entire 5G network competition, the situation is similar. Even if the United States wins the 5G network competition, it will not stop China from rising.