There Is No Race To 5G And The US Wouldnt Be Winning Even If There Was
Data continues to indicate that despite ridiculous oodles of hype, U.S. 5G networks aren’t much to write home about. According to a recent study by OpenSignal, the U.S. ranked dead last in terms of 5G speeds in a 14-country comparison, largely due to our failure to make mid-band spectrum available for public use. Other reports have repeatedly shown that many initial 5G networks are actually slower
than existing 4G networks. Not a great look given the months of DC rhetoric about how the U.S. is in an urgent “race to 5G.” In reality, it’s less of a race and more of a drunken stumble.
While carriers (usually falsely) advertise massive 5G coverage and reality bending improvements at the hands of 5G, consumers' first impression continues to be of the underwhelming variety:
“Millions of people are experiencing 5G for the first time this month. And I imagine they’re asking: Is that all there is? 5G hit a new level of success in the US in October with the launch of the first 5G iPhones and Verizon’s “nationwide” 5G. But the vast majority of Americans are currently getting a 4G-like, slow 5G experience that doesn’t reflect the lofty promises we’ve been hearing for the past few years.”
With smartphone innovation and sales plateauing, wireless carriers and handset vendors alike have been eager to portray 5G as less of a modest evolution and more of a revolution. Claims of 5G all but curing cancer have been common, as have claims that the technology will quickly usher forth the smart cars and smarter cities of tomorrow. 5G hype has also been used to spur network hardware sales, and has also proven useful to goose national security worries by folks eager to heighten tensions with China and boost subsidization of entrenched telecom giants.
But again, if it’s a race, the U.S. sure as hell isn’t winning it:
And this is just overall speed we’re talking about. News outlets, network data nerds, and lawmakers alike routinely fail to discuss price. U.S. consumers already pay some of the highest prices in the developed world for mobile data, a trend that shows no sign of slowing down with 5G. Especially given our recent decisions to all but lobotomize FCC regulators, eliminate net neutrality (which helped control efforts to further nickel and dime U.S. users), and our utter obsession with rubber stamping competition-killing sector consolidation. The race to lower prices (the top request in most consumer surveys) is utterly nonexistent.
There really is no race to 5G. It’s a giant pile of lobbyist nonsense. Users in China aren’t impacted by whether users in Australia or the UK have access to marginally faster networks. And our broadband coverage maps here in the States are so terrible (often by design), the idea that the U.S. could even accurately measure who’s “winning” the deployment race is laughable in and of itself.
5G absolutely will ultimately deliver better speeds, lower latency, and more reliable networks over the next five years. But again, it’s more of a slow, steady evolution than some type of magical, game-changing revolution. But modest evolution doesn’t sell smartphones and network hardware, so here we are.
Author: Karl Bode
|Comcast Tells Customers They May Lose Access To Comcast Channels If Comcast Can’t Agree With Comcast (2020-11-04)||Comcast is informing the companys 20+ million cable TV customers that they may lose access to Comcast TV channels next month if Comcast cant come to some sort of agreement with Comcast Its an absurd twist on the already annoying practice of carriage disputes where customers pay the price for broadcasters and cable TV providers being unable to come to terms on new agreements after old ones expire U..|
|Daily Deal: The Pro Photography And Photoshop 20 Course Bundle (2020-11-04)||Grab your camera capture amazing photos and learn to process them in Photoshop Lightroom and GIMP with the Pro Photography and Photoshop 20 Course Bundle Youll learn how to take your camera skills to the next level and then how to process those photos to truly capture the look you were envisioning From layers and filters to levels and curves youll come to grips with essential photo editing concept..|
|Appeals Court Says Baltimore PD’s Aerial Surveillance Program Doesn’t Violate The Constitution (2020-11-16)||The Baltimore PD can still use its flying spies says the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals The aerial surveillance program – first introduced on accident in 2016 – allows the PD to track the movement of people across the entire city thanks to high-powered cameras mounted on airplanes The surveillance system created by Persistent Surveillance Systems can capture 32-square miles People and vehicles ..|
|Kentucky Judges Reject Proposal For More Warrant Approval Transparency (2020-11-25)||Scrutiny of warrants and the judges who approve them has stepped up in Louisville Kentucky after a no-knock raid ended in the killing of an innocent resident by police officers The shooting of Breonna Taylor sparked protests reform efforts and at least one judges personal moratorium on no-knock warrants Cops dont like to talk about their warrants Affidavits are often filed under seal Sometimes the..|
|Ajit Pai’s FCC Does Something Good, Frees Wireless Spectrum The Auto Industry Had Done Little With (2020-11-25)||While weve had no shortage of criticism for Ajit Pais facts-optional relentless ass kissing of entrenched telecom monopolies or his wholesale demolition of US consumer protection his agency has done a good job bringing more wireless spectrum to market Doing so wasnt particularly controversial since everybody consumers to big carriers alike benefit from having access to more spectrum – especially .. Ajit Pai’s FCC Does Something Good, Frees Wireless Spectrum The Auto Industry Had Done Little With|
|GitHub, EFF Push Back Against RIAA, Reinstate Youtube-dl Repository (2020-11-17)||A few weeks ago the RIAA hurled a DMCA takedown notice at an unlikely target: GitHub The code site was ordered to take down its repositories of youtube-dl software that allowed users to download local copies of video and audio hosted at YouTube and other sites The RIAA made some noise about copyright infringement citing notes in the code pointing to Vevo videos uploaded by major labels before gett..|
|The DOJ Will Finally Allow Local Cops To Wear Body Cameras When Working With Federal Agencies (2020-11-10)||The federal government is finally coming around to body cameras While law enforcement agencies around the nation continue to buy body cameras for their officers federal agencies have been less receptive to these tools of incremental accountability and transparency First lets address body cameras Theyre not a panacea They dont turn bad cops into good cops Theyre far more useful to prosecutors then ..|
|What If Cambridge Analytica Owned Its Own Social Network? CA Backer Rebekah Mercer Admits She’s A Co-Founder Of Parler (2020-11-16)||Since the election Parler has found renewed life among Trump supporters who feel that checks notes being fact-checked or limited for sharing debunked and dangerous conspiracy theories is somehow an attack on something reality: its an attack on their delusions And as Parler has gotten a new round of attention some questions were raised about the funding behind it After all there was no big VC or kn..|
|WHO Is Blocking Commenters From Even Mentioning Taiwan On Its Facebook Page (2020-11-12)||A few months back we highlighted the insane lengths the WHO was going to in an effort to silence Taiwan despite that countrys extraordinarily successful efforts to combat COVID-19 Yes yes everyone understands the geopolitical mess in that the Chinese government refuses to recognize that Taiwan is an independent country which everyone who lives in reality knows and that various organizations and go..|
|DNC Sues Georgia Governor Over His Bullshit Claims Democrats Hacked The State’s Voter Registration System (2020-11-16)||The never-ending amount of election related litigation keeps on coming The Trump campaign is still heavily invested in lawsuits – a practice it started before the election and it hasnt scaled back now that its boy has been handed an L Georgia remains a hotly contested state thanks in part to pressure applied by the outbound President and his many minions It will recount all five million votes whi..|