- Christopher Wood, Executive Director, LGBT Tech
The U.S. Must keep Up in 5G and Broadband Technologies to Stay Globally Competitive
Updated: Oct 13, 2020
This week Analysys Mason released a report detailing the global race that the United States is in with regards to 5G speeds and although we are holding our position as one of the leading countries with regards to 5G deployment, the US and South Korea are currently trailing China in such deployment.
Over the past few months we've discussed the importance of launching newer technologies to close the digital divide, close the homework gap and allow individuals to access basic services. The United States saw the benefit of leading the 3G and 4G global technology race, while the Japanese and European industries and societies felt what it was like to fall behind.
Our country, especially minority communities like the LGBTQ community cannot afford to fall behind in the technology race when adequate access to reliable fast technology can impact everything from healthcare, education, economic opportunities or finding a safe community online and could make a huge difference between being success and failure in everyday life. As part of the Race to 5G report highlights, it is not only important for companies to make significant investment in new technologies but it is just as important for policymakers to ensure that long term, forward-looking legislation is passed. That point was highlighted by FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr during LGBT Tech's SXSW panel this year, Worlds Apart: Bridging Rural and Urban Divides.
“Something I’ve been working on a lot is infrastructure deployment policies,” explained Brendan Carr of the FCC. “We have a tremendous amount of regulatory red tape at the Commission that is diverting real dollars, real capital that could be put in the ground to put up a new cell site or deploy new fiber, and it’s going to a federal regulatory review process."
As LGBT Tech stated in our Let’s Keep Up the 5G Momentum blog on March 21st:
"The FCC should move forward with these auctions as soon as possible—but there is work to be done before they can do so. Today, the licenses in question present some difficulties: they are disorganized along the band, and disorganized geographically across the nation; they in some cases overlap; and most are set up in less-than-ideal 50 MHz blocks. The FCC must sift through current licenses and reorganize portions of the spectrum to better fit the 5G technology environment, as well as set a 200 MHz block standard, which would be a much better fit for 5G (and therefore 5G deployment) than the current 50 MHz spectrum blocks. This approach will drive faster and more efficient deployment of 5G networks, which is critical to the United States maintaining its leading position in the wireless sector and delivering the kinds and levels of service consumers want and need, including and especially those in the LGBTQ community.”