FCC Chairman Outs Proposal That Will Free Up Spectrum For 5G Networks
5G just got a big boost from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Tom Wheeler, the chairman of the agency, has revealed that in July of this year, the FCC will vote on a proposal that will help detect and more importantly, free up wireless spectrum at high frequencies that will used to host 5G mobile networks. As it did with the emergence of 4G LTE not too long ago, the FCC is deciding not to meddle and basically just let innovators in the wireless industry to define and further develop 5G tech.
Everybody who knows what 5G is is definitely excited to experience it for themselves. It is said that 5G cellular networks could be capable of speeds of ten up to a hundred times faster than the 4G networks we are accustomed to today. Such speeds would make it easier for the concept of the Internet of Things to come to life, wherein everything is connected to each other, including automobiles, home appliances, and various tech gadgets.
Consumers are not the only ones eager to shift to the age of 5G. Even the wireless carriers can not seem to wait for 5G to become the next, or more accurately, the current big thing. Industry leaders Verizon Wireless and AT&T have already begun testing their respective 5G service offerings, and by next year, limited versions of the tech could already be made available to their subscribers.
Understanding that it might be best to just speed up things along, the FCC’s decision to try to free up extra wireless spectrum for 5G is certainly a welcome gesture to various wireless operators. Moreover, the FCC is conveying a willingness to just let wireless carriers explore this new generation wireless technology, with minimum involvement from the agency.
According to Wheeler, the proposal is to be circulated this week. If it gets enough votes, it will help pave the way for the United States to become the first nation to start identifying high frequency spectrum that can be used for 5G purposes. High frequency spectrum are also known as millimeter waves, and they have the distinction of being able to carry copious amounts of data. Furthermore, millimeter waves can transmit signals with very minimal delay or latency. But it should be noted that using high frequency spectrum has its challenges. For one, signals sent by way of millimeter waves can only reach so far, and also, they are not that effective in penetrating buildings and structures. In other words, it is not just about detecting high frequency spectrum, but also about building a network that optimizes the coverage and distance of signals sent via high frequency spectrum.