Trump Administration Weighs Building US 5G Network to Counter China
Some White House officials view next-generation 5G wireless service as a “key area of competition,” and they say that the threat from China, in particular, justifies a “moonshot” government effort like the construction of the interstate highway system. A National Security Council memo urges the Trump administration to consider extraordinary efforts to clear the way for the new technology or even to help build it in order to counter the growing economic and political threat from China’s aggressive efforts to develop 5G.
“It is necessary and possible to build a secure, high-performance, world-leading 5G network platform by the end of the first term,” the memo says. The memo was first reported by news website Axios. Such an effort could secure the U.S. position as the world leader in internet technology and encourage a renaissance of U.S. telecommunications manufacturing, the memo suggests. The ambitious goals outlined in the memo, however, were greeted with skepticism by some telecommunications experts, who said the proposed effort’s rapid timetable was likely unrealistic, particularly given the huge costs associated with building a nationwide 5G network. They also predicted widespread industry opposition, as did the memo itself.
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