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Ren to Donald Trump: Take Our 5G, Please

Ren Zhengfei tells the Economist and the NY Times he is prepared to give the US essentially everything the President has asked, including the crown jewels: the complete design and source code of Huawei's 5G system. Ren would "license the entire Huawei 5G platform to any American company that wants to manufacture it and install it and operate it, completely independent of Huawei." more

Will Broadband Go Wireless?

For years it's been impossible to go to any industry forum without meeting a few folks who predict that residential broadband will go wireless. This buzz has accelerated with the exaggerated claims that fast 5G broadband is right around the corner. I've seen even more talk about this due to a recent Pew poll that shows that the number of people that only use their cellphones for data has climbed significantly over the last few years – I'm going to discuss that poll in another upcoming blog. more

OneWeb Rises From the Ashes – Maybe

A consortium of the UK Government and Bharti Enterprises bought bankrupt OneWeb, a company that had raised $3.2 billion and had acquired valuable spectrum rights, for $1 billion. That is a good start, but a BBC article says experts believe that at least $3 billion is needed to complete the OneWeb constellation. Will they make it?
The UK government will be a source of further funding. OneWeb's primary goal is closing the digital divide by bringing broadband connectivity... more

FCC Declines Emergency Briefing Request Concerning Location Data Collection

U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairman Ajit Pai declined a top House Democrat's request for an emergency briefing on the wireless industry's data collection practices amid troubling reports about the availability of real-time location information, reports Harper Neidig in The Hill. more

Google Shows Signs of Agressive Plan for Nationwide Wireless Broadband

Google Fiber is planning a move from the expensive and slow-moving physical pipes strategy to deployment of wireless network, according to an FCC filing. more

White Space for Internet Use Interfering with Wireless Patient Devices?

There is a germ of truth (perhaps a prion-sized germ or maybe just an amino acid) in the idea that transmitters in "white spaces" in the TV band *might* disrupt patient monitoring equipment if designed by a lunatic who believes in sending massive pulses of energy in a whitespace in the TV band (perhaps amplified by a large parabolic dish antenna the size of a trashcan lid or larger, aimed at the patient monitor system. But that risk is completely shared with zillions of other potential radiators of energy in the entire electromagnetic spectrum... GE, of course, owns NBC. There is a MAJOR conflict of interest at the corporate level of GE... more

U.S. Has Poor Cellular Video

Opensignal recently published a report that looks around the world at the quality of cellular video. Video has become a key part of the cellular experience as people are using cellphones for entertainment, and since social media and advertising have migrated to video. The use of cellular video is exploding. Netflix reports that 25% of its total streaming worldwide is sent to mobile devices. The new Disney+ app that was just launched got over 3 million downloads of their cellular app in just the first 24 hours. more

5G First in China’s Key Industrial Investment

Four Chinese ministries issued the policy document in September, called "Guiding Opinions on Expanding Investment in Strategic Emerging Industries and Cultivating Strengthened New Growth Points and Growth Poles." As you can see below, in this document, 5G was the top recommendation. The National Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, and the Ministry of Finance came together to suggest priorities for the 14th Five-Year Plan. more

For the First Time Wireless Carriers and Auto Makers Seek Common Ground on Wireless Standards

For the first time auto makers and wireless carriers are actually seeking common ground around the creation of the wireless new standard, writes Roger Lanctot, Associate Director in the Global Automotive Practice at Strategy Analytics. more

5G a Fizzle With Consumers

The cellular companies have made an unprecedented push to get customers interested in 5G. Back in November, I recorded a college football game that enabled me to go back and count the twelve 5G commercials during the game. Advertising during sports events is relatively expensive, so these ads were not purchased at bargain-basement prices. The amount of money being spent on advertising 5G must be gigantic. more

The Impact of Satellite Broadband

Recently I've had several people ask me about the expected impact of low-orbit satellite broadband. While significant competition from satellites is probably a number of years away, there are several major initiatives like StarLink (Elon Musk), Project Kuiper (Amazon), and OneWeb that have announced plans to launch swarms of satellites to provide broadband. more

5G Carriers Hoping for Handouts

The Information Technology Industry Council (ITI) published a recent report that looks at "5G policy Principles and 5G Essentials for Global Policymakers." For those who don't know ITI, they are a DC-based lobbying group that represents most of heavy-hitter tech firms, and which works to help shape policy on tax, trade, talent, security, access, and sustainability issues. I don't think I've seen another document that so clearly outlines the hopes of the big US cellular companies. more

Can Satellite Broadband Be Affordable?

When we first heard of the possibility of broadband from low-orbit satellites, there was a lot of speculation that the technology could bring affordable broadband to the masses around the globe. The latest announcement from Starlink shows that affordable broadband is probably not coming in the immediate future. Starlink announced a premium tier of service with a $500 monthly fee for 150-500 Mbps. more

Have We Reached ‘Peak Telecom’ and What Does This Mean for 5G

"Peak telecom" is described as the maximum point of expansion reached by the traditional telecommunications industry before the internet commoditized the industry to a utility pipe. I had to think of this when I read the recent outcomes of the famous Ericsson Consumer Lab survey. The company used the result of the survey to counteract market criticism regarding the viability of the telco business models in the deployment of 5G. more

5G Funny Numbers: 10M Sign on October, Only 5M Phones in November

Ten million Chinese "reserved" 5G phones in the first two weeks of October, a powerful signal of high demand. Huawei thought they could all get phones in October. But the official figures are less than 1M 5G phones in October and ~5M in November. WTF? It could be an ordinary problem of ramping supply of a new product. It could be the official figures on phone sales are lagging reality by several weeks. more