Tech companies, around the world, are all working overtime to set the world on fire with its blazing speed. 5G network technology means enabling the next generation of innovations, creating new ecosystems and opening the door to digitizing world industries. It will have the ability to connect moving objects, vehicles, trucks, buses and more with a new level of intelligence. It will host benefits to consumers, businesses, and mobile operators alike, with its ultra-reliability, ultra-low latency, and increased connectivity.

The 5G battle continues

Research, on 5G, began soon after award-winning Turkish scientist Erdal Arikan invented pole codes in 2008, but the real battle for domination began in 2012. Tech companies and governments across the globe have been doing research and setting up test sites in efforts to be king of the hill. Mainly because whoever reaches the top first can increase their leverage and will see an ongoing stream of income.

French telecom group Orange will launch 5G in 17 major European cities during 2019. And Orange Spain has been testing in seven cities and is said to deploy the technology in “three or four” Spanish cities in 2019. Last week, Nordic telecom Telia announced they will launch testing in Norway’s capital Oslo and a network at Helsinki Airport in Finland in partnership with airport operator Finavia to support a 5G-enabled robot.

KT a Korean telecom has officially launched its network commercial service, through an AI-equipped robot named Lota. With plans to expand their 5G network to 24 major cities. While here in the United States AT&T just announced on December 21, 2018, they will be the first to offer 5G network access and hot-spots to parts of 12 cities at no cost for 90 days.

Hot-spots will be made available by Netgear.

Massive investments needed for 5G infrastructure

To create a successful 5G network, major investment must be made for the additional infrastructure of towers and small cells to the network. According to the 2018 CTIA report the United States, South Korea, and China have all taken major steps toward 5G readiness.

China is seen as leading the pack by a narrow margin, as it's government-led committee has helped in building network sites at an unprecedented rate. The main player is China Tower, investing over $17.7 billion to build and own 96 percent of towers and small cells; an estimated total of 1.9 million wireless sites.

Time for U.S. to address 5G issues

Unfortunately, the United States has been slow to invest in wireless infrastructure to provide the speed or the network expansion needed to connect devices to 5G. The lack of investment in the U.S. is due to carriers not being able to figure out how they can monetize their investment. Since it will take about three to five years to fully deploy 5G to the masses, carriers need to quickly decide how 5G's “faster end-user speeds” can benefit them.

The United States needs policy makers to inspire U.S. leadership in #5G. Policies can be made at the local, state and federal levels to help reduce cost, utilize already existing infrastructure, streamline and shorten permit process to reduce the time of deploying 5G.

In order for the United States to maintain global leadership in the wireless industry, 5G issues need to be addressed this year. Not only for the economic benefits of the on-going development in the retail and manufacturing arena but the future development of 5G use in health, transportation, construction, and other areas.