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A new strategy for 5G without Huawei


Okay so we all know that five G. is taking a long time to get here and that it's a big infrastructure challenge. That is complicated by some geopolitics namely suspicion about Wa wa the Chinese Telecom provider that sells the most five G. networking equipment globally now. Thirty one mostly. Us based companies have created a coalition to push for a new kind of Five G. INFRASTRUCTURE. That involves less complicated hardware and more complicated software. The coalition says this approach will foster innovation and Competition Doug break is director of broadband and spectrum policy at the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation. It's a think tank that works on this kind of thing and he says a more virtual approach offers a lot of benefits. You can do more in software and iterating more quickly than you. Can you know having to individually configure all these pieces of equipment throughout the network but another sort of policy imperative? That that we're seeing is trying to make a change to the the market that is not so easily cornered by the Chinese company while way when you have these sort of margin expensive single integrated pieces of equipment. It's relatively easy for a single company to come to grow more and more market share especially when it's backed by some of the unfair trade policies other policies that the China has used to push way to where it is today. Will it require less hardware or less infrastructure installation overall when people hear the term virtualization right? It makes it sound like the network itself is completely ephemeral up in the cloud right. It's only the functionalities of the network that is virtually running software so it still requires pieces of equipment out in the field. One that is hopefully cheaper more innovative and leads to a market dynamic that that sees a flourishing of smaller Us leads startups. That are interested in in providing this type of equipment but it sounds like we would have to replicate a fair bit of infrastructure right. I mean it's still inexpensive five G. proposition like does this slowdown rollout. Don't think slows down. Roll out I think that this is part of the ongoing transition to five g right we're seeing ongoing deployment and also sort of evolution as it makes sense to replace the existing four g network more and more five. G. EQUIPMENT WILL BE BUILT OUT. And so it's it's not a question of starting over but this is just sort of part of the continual evolution as we as we make the shift to to five. G. I mean it's so interesting because on the one hand like the way you're describing the technology makes sense on the other hand it feels like okay. We're changing the direction of this. Potentially globally economically crucial technology to benefit. Us companies is like the rest of the world. Going to agree that this is the way forward and this is how we should do it. It is already ongoing right. This is an area of transition that wireless operators around the world have been interested for some time there. A number of coalitions that have been focused on the sort of technical aspects of trying to define standardized interfaces between the components of of this equipment is just now the sort of recently the the administration has has found this as a as a real opportunity and they're sort of ongoing battle with with alway. Got It so I guess. Fundamentally is at a technical issue or a trade issue in one level rate. It's about getting over these sort of technical hurdles but more broadly speaking right a lot of five G. especially the geopolitical dynamics around five G. in China Come down to trade issues and part of that is you know convincing like minded allies that that this is a real challenge going forward How we can be sort of setting setting ourselves up for a healthier market for wireless telecommunications equipment in the future what are the security implications here? You know the system that you're describing. The virtual is five. G. is more secure or less secure. Is that part of a huge part of the calculation. Or not there. Is this this sort of long term concern if China continues to China and really while away continues to gain more and more control over the the sort of critical infrastructure globally that sort of a term challenge that? I think this helps change the dynamic of when you talk about sort of narrow specific security issues having these virtual networks where operators can control more of the of the network through software. Gives them a lot more visibility and control over? What's happening on the network? So they can see if something looks mess if somebody has access to something that they're not supposed to for example at the same time right moving moving a whole telecommunications that work into software really increases the complexity and so their potential problems that could that could arise with a with a transition and just the sheer amount of of complications that introduces

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