White House pledges $400 million to research 5G wireless technology

By Shawn Knight ยท 13 replies
Jul 15, 2016
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  1. The Obama Administration on Friday announced a $400 million initiative led by the National Science Foundation that will conduct research in the area of 5G wireless technology which promises to be up to 100 times faster than today’s 4G LTE.

    The Advanced Wireless Research Initiative (AWRI), which builds on the Federal Communications Commission’s recent Spectrum Frontiers vote, will deploy four city-scale testing platforms over the next decade that will be used for advanced wireless research.

    Each platform will be comprised of a network of software-defined radio antennas blanketing their respective cities, essentially mimicking existing cellular networks. The White House says this will allow academic researchers, entrepreneurs and wireless companies to test, prove and refine their technologies and software algorithms in a real-world setting.

    The cities, which haven’t yet been named, will be selected based on open competition, the administration said.

    Yesterday’s FCC vote made the US the first country in the world to free up large quantities of high-frequency millimeter wave spectrum for both licensed and unlicensed use.

    The White House also said that more than 20 US-based private-sector companies and associations including AT&T, HTC, Intel, Juniper Networks, Nokia, Qualcomm, Samsung, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon have collectively pledged over $35 million to support the design, development, deployment and ongoing operations of the aforementioned testing platforms.

    It’s more than just financial backing, however, as the entities will also provide design support, technical networking expertise, networking hardware, software-defined networking switches and routers, cloud computing, experimental handsets and devices, servers and more.

    More information on the initiative can be found in the White House’s lengthy press release. You can also learn more about the FCC’s recent vote by clicking here.

    Image courtesy Africa Studio, Shutterstock

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  2. EClyde

    EClyde TS Evangelist Posts: 1,304   +429

    Big waste...spend the money getting cheap internet to the masses
  3. Greg S

    Greg S TechSpot Staff Posts: 1,070   +427

    That's not going to happen without price fixing, meaning the government is going to have a very large amount of control of internet infrastructure. That's probably not what you want for the long term.

    As it stands now, the masses have affordable internet. Not cheap, but not so expensive that you can't buy necessities. Median income people and families shouldn't have any problems affording average speed internet connections if they live in any somewhat populated area.
  4. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 1,870   +1,291

    That last part is the real issue. Imagine how much wider the Digital Divide will be when the cities have 5g and the 20% of the population living a few miles outside them still have...nothing. I realize this is perfectly fine as far the liberals in charge are concerned - the ones who continue to do everything possible to disenfranchise people in "flyover states". But we're already seeing it starting to impact quality of life, education, job opportunities, etc. At some point those citizens will get fed up with being left behind and Internet access will become a voting issue. What happens when all communications are IP-based and the telecoms have shut down all the copper lines? In some areas the schools already require all homework to be done online. I'll tell you how absurd it is in my area: 15-20 years ago if I wanted to buy just about anything I would drive to town and walk into a store. Now most of those stores are gone, but I usually still have to drive to town so I can get online and order things through the mail. And their talking about 5g? Here's something else: 100 time faster really means "100 times as much throughput", which means that enhanced (or all new) networking standards will need to be embraced. Wireless capacity will actually outstrip population growth. So unless you have a bunch of people all using 5g at the same time in the same area, network congestion will become a thing of the past..well, more than it already is because its virtually a fairy tale now. The point is, by then 4g data will be an insignificant burden on the cellular infrastructure the way 3g is today. Yet you still can't get unlimited 3g service, and I guarantee you won't be able to get unlimited 4g when 5g is the norm, either. 5g won't help anyone but the telecoms who will gouge us harder than ever to pay for "network upgrades"..and you'll proabably still have a 10gb throttling cap.
    Timonius and EClyde like this.
  5. gcarter

    gcarter TS Enthusiast Posts: 82   +23

    Meh @ the negative comments so far. Research into faster anything is a good thing! Lets not get bogged down with how it will be billed to people and just get excited about the prospect! Sheesh people!

    I remember when I switched from dial-up to my first ever adsl / broadband connection.... was awe inspired when I get 0.5mb speeds! I now get 40-50mb on my mobile phone via 4g!

    So again, enough with the doom crowd and bring on the faster interwebz!
    Uncle Al likes this.
  6. EClyde

    EClyde TS Evangelist Posts: 1,304   +429

    Your pants are too tight
  7. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 3,339   +1,986

    Oh the memories .... 110 baud on the old Western Union TTY, playing Star Trek down at UC on the weekends ..... and when 300 baud showed up, we thought we were GODS!!!!
    gcarter likes this.
  8. gcarter

    gcarter TS Enthusiast Posts: 82   +23

    Nice! I remember upgrading my modem to a 56k one and as you said, felt like jumping on a freight train!
  9. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,996   +2,528

    Well, then what will happen is, all the existing "Obama phones" will have to be recalled. Since you know as well as I, we couldn't have the poor feeling like they're being discriminated against, by having to slog through a simple drug buy, with old fashioned 3 or 4G service.
  10. roberthi

    roberthi TS Addict Posts: 234   +54

    Why not pledge 400 million to homeless Americans and those who don't have a jobs, elderly care, etc. What a waste.
  11. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,996   +2,528

    Because if you give them cash, a considerable portion of them will just piss it away on "necessities", (such as rims, hair extensions, or drugs), as opposed to giving them a free phone which would allow them to start up a drug business of their own...(y)

    (Which incidentally coincides nicely with the age old adage, "give me a fish, I eat for a night, teach me to fish, I eat for a lifetime").
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2016
  12. Tanstar

    Tanstar TS Evangelist Posts: 616   +176

    Verizon is already well into this. Why is the government (that already owes more than it can ever repay) spending money to do research that the private sector already has in hand???
    Stryder007 likes this.
  13. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,996   +2,528

    Because it doesn't want them to have to spend money out of their own pockets to continue said research?

    Or possibly the corporate sector doesn't want to spend money out of their own pockets to continue said research, and have sent their lobbyists to convey that message to the president in no uncertain terms.

    Look at it this way, the government is constantly spending money it can't possibly repay on "social entitlements", to support the unrepentant breeding of entire classes of people the country would be better off without. When there are no jobs available, or people simply won't do the jobs which are, they have plenty of free time available to reproduce. This is when the liberal component of the Fed steps in and subsidizes those unprotected sex acts, thereby assuring themselves of a continuing pool voters into the next generation and beyond.

    When I mention that Elon Musk has played the system much in the same way, but at the corporate level, people will say I'm not in tune with the greatness of this man.

    So, for the sake of this discussion, let's simply say, "government welfare programs should encompass all facets of our American equality ideals, and not discriminate against anyone for the misfortune of being filthy rich". Besides, those wealthy individuals wall, "pay it forward", by finding surreptitious ways of injecting vast amounts of capital into those self same politicians next campaign funding. Y'all don't beez gettin' those kindza paybacks from da poor...:(
  14. Joe Blow

    Joe Blow TS Booster Posts: 143   +47

    Since the White House is "getting involved," this means one thing. The New World Order is interested. This makes me suspect of either the technology or the implementation scheme.

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