TOP TAKES is IoT Sources’ filtered content channel, bringing you the most important breaking news and notable events surrounding the Internet of Things. Today’s post originated from: www.cnet.com
IoT Sources wrote an initial story about the U.S. government plans to launch to a nationwide 5G network. This story by Marguerite Reardon provides an update on the progress being made towards making a nationwide 5G network a reality.
With the stroke of a pen, President Donald Trump avoided another government shutdown and helped pave the way for more wireless spectrum to be used for next-generation 5G wireless service.
The Ray Baum’s Act was passed as part of the $1.3 trillion spending bill Trump signed into law Friday. Earlier in the day, Trump had threatened to veto the legislation, but he announced that he had signed it into a law preventing a government shutdown.
The legislation, named in honor of the late Energy & Commerce staff director who died last month, includes language from the Mobile Now Act, which identifies more spectrum that can be used for 5G. The legislative package also paves the way for wireless spectrum auctions. And it reauthorized the FCC for the first time in 28 years.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai applauded the passage of the legislation.
“Today’s action by President Trump and Congress will help America lead the world in 5G,” he said. “It is also noteworthy that this constitutes the first reauthorization of the FCC in decades. Reauthorization helps our agency steer a path forward in our work on behalf of the American people.”
The news comes as regulators and wireless companies talk up the benefits of 5G or the fifth generation of wireless technology. It promises to be significantly faster and more responsive than previous generations of wireless technology. It’s expected to usher in innovative applications in self-driving cars, telemedicine and the trend in net-connected devices called the internet of things.
While the promise of 5G has been hyped, actual rollouts have been slow. Regulators at the FCC have been pushing policies to ensure the US maintains its leadership in wireless. On Thursday it voted to relax requirements for 5G small cell radio deployments in order to speed up deployment.
US Wireless providers are expected to make significant headway in 2018. Verizon and AT&T plan to launch limited mobile 5G service this year, while T-Mobile and Sprint are setting things up now for a commercial launch early next year. Handset makers and chipmakers are working to get devices ready for 2019 as well.
FCC Chairman Pai announced in February, at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona, that the FCC is planning a series of auctions starting this year in mid-range and higher frequency radio bands to feed demand for 5G wireless service.