Electromagnetic frequencies used for wireless communications
5G remains a work in progress throughout the United States. Access to 5G networks is limited to a handful of US cities, and in some instances, it’s currently slower than 4G speeds.
White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows is leaning on the Pentagon to move ahead with a plan to stand up a 5G wireless network and the idea, despite opposition from key government and private-sector players, could well outlive the Trump administration. But there is also a chance the process will derail. The push has rankled some top DoD officials, sources say, with Defense Secretary Mark Esper said to be among those wary of the idea. Some officials at the Federal Communications Commission are also troubled by the national 5G plan.
Remarks Of FCC Chief Of Staff Matthew Berry At Spectrum Management Conference Panel On "Covid-19—What Impact And Lessons For The Spectrum Community?"
The Federal Communications Commission has so far approved over 230 COVID-19 related Special Temporary Authorities (STAs). What has been the result? During the pandemic, we’ve been very pleased by the performance of our nation’s wireless networks. For example, according to Ookla, notwithstanding increased demand, in April average mobile broadband download speeds in the United States were actually faster than they were in February, before the pandemic hit, and they’ve gotten faster since.
The centerpiece of my 2018 remarks was the Federal Communications Commission Commission’s new 5G FAST plan. And when I say new, it was really new—as in, five days old. I had announced the plan at a White House Summit the previous Friday. Two years on, as we approach the end of my fourth year as FCC Chairman, we can take stock of how we’ve done when it comes to executing that plan.
House Commerce Leaders Question Legality, Political Motivations Behind DoD's Inquiry Into Nationalized 5G Spectrum
House Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) and Communications Subcommittee Chairman Mike Doyle (D-PA) launched an inquiry into the Department of Defense’s (DoD) apparent moves to own and operate a national 5G network and lease federal spectrum for commercial purposes. The inquiry comes after DoD released a Request for Information (RFI) that seeks input from industry on these topics, and multiple press reports that the timing of the RFI could be politically motivated.
The Department of Defense announced $600 million in awards for 5G experimentation and testing at five US military test sites, representing the largest full-scale 5G tests for dual-use applications in the world. Each installation will partner military services, industry leaders, and academic experts to advance the Department’s 5G capabilities. Projects will include piloting 5G-enabled augmented/virtual reality for mission planning and training, testing 5G-enabled Smart Warehouses, and evaluating 5G technologies to enhance distributed command and control.
The Trump Administration issued a National Strategy to Secure 5G, which we assessed against our 6 key characteristics for effective national strategies. The plan only partially addressed 5 of the 6 characteristics. For example, it didn't say what resources are needed to carry the plan out—which can make it hard to allocate and shift resources appropriately. We recommended that Administration officials ensure the strategy fully addresses all 6 characteristics.
Recently the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit ruled that the Federal Communications Commission doesn’t have to delay opening up the 6 Gigahertz spectrum band for unlicensed Wi-Fi. The court’s decision was in response to a request from public safety and utility organizations, as well as other groups such as AT&T, to grant a stay to the FCC order to open up the 6GHz band.
Beat China By Harnessing Important, National Airwaves for 5G Act of 2020, or the Beat CHINA for 5G Act of 2020, would empower the Federal Communications Commission to open more critical mid-band spectrum for non-federal, commercial wireless use by requiring the FCC to begin an auction of the 3.45-3.55 GHz band by December 2021.
Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai announced that the items below are tentatively on the agenda for the October Open Commission Meeting scheduled for Tuesday, October 27, 2020: