U.S. Government on 5G Integrated and Open Networks + ATIS on U.S. 6G Leadership

In a speech he was scheduled to deliver (but didn’t) Thursday at a Global CTO Roundtable on 5G Integrated and Open Networks (ION), U.S. Attorney General William Barr wrote (bold font added):

The United States and our partners are in an urgent race against the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to develop and build 5G infrastructure around the world. Our national security and the flourishing of our liberal democratic values here and around the world depend on our winning it.

Future 5G networks will be a critical piece of global infrastructure, the central nervous system of the global economy. Unfortunately, the PRC is well on its way to seizing a decisive 5G advantage. If the PRC wins the 5G race, the geopolitical, economic, and national security consequences will be staggering. The PRC knows this, which explains why it is using every lever of power to expand its 5G market share around the globe. The community of free and democratic nations must do the same.

To compete and win against the PRC juggernaut, the United States and its partners must work closely with trusted vendors to pursue practical and realistic strategies that can turn the tide now.  Although the ‘Open RAN’ approach is not a solution to our immediate problem, the concept of Integrated and Open Networks (ION), which was the topic of yesterday’s roundtable, holds promise and should be explored. We can win the race, but we must act now.

From Mung Chiang of the U.S. Office of Science and Technology Advisor:

With a broad, inclusive tent of what “open” means, a nuanced appreciation of network deployment reality, and a more solid view on architectural choices, ION becomes one of the areas where the United States and partner countries can lead in 5G innovation. We invite technology leaders in the industry to help make that happen. Speed is the key to winning the 5G race.

While technology should not be mistaken as a solution to the fundamental problem of a distorted market, its exploration is still useful. ION and Edge Computing, for example, are two areas of innovation to realize 5G’s promise of a new level of responsiveness and scale. Such innovation leadership, along with the Clean Networks initiative and supply chain security form three prongs in a global strategy for 5G.

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Separately, the Alliance for Telecommunications Industry Solutions (ATIS) has issued a call to action to promote U.S. 6G leadership.

“While innovation can be triggered in reaction to current market needs, technology leadership at a national level requires an early commitment and development that addresses U.S. needs as well as a common vision and set of objectives,” said Susan Miller, President and CEO of ATIS, possibly in acknowledgement of the panic the U.S. has got itself into over 5G and of recent developments in China.

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Comment, analysis and assessment:

Mobile standards are global in nature, so talk of regional races seems disingenuous if not counter-productive.  It is bad enough that there are six competing IMT 2020 RITs (Radio Interface Technologies) from five different countries/regions being progressed by ITU-R WP5D for IMT 2020.specs with three  based on 3GPP 5G NR (Release 15 and 16):  China, Korea, India (TSDSI).  In addition to 3GPPs RIT/SRIT submissions (from ATIS), there are also the DECT/ETSI IMT 2020 RIT submission based on DECT NR and the Nufront (Chinese company) submission based on their own 5G radio which supposedly supports ultra low latency.

What Attorney General Barr probably means is that he’s worried U.S. 5G networks are going to be second rate compared to the Chinese equivalent from Huawei and ZTE.  However, he said that Open RAN is NOT a solution to the U.S.’ current “5G problem.”  Barr and Ms Chiang say that ION is a more viable approach (what the *&^%$** is ION?).  In particular, “ION becomes one of the areas where the United States and partner countries can lead in 5G innovation.”

Telecoms.com author Scott Bicheno wrote:  “Any non-Chinese telecoms company with a few bright ideas would be well advised to stick close to the U.S. government as the public money tap seems to be well and truly open.”

 

References:

https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/statement-attorney-general-william-p-barr-regarding-us-department-state-global-cto-roundtable

https://www.state.gov/remarks-at-global-chief-technology-officers-roundtable-on-5g-ion/

US ramps up the ‘5G race’ rhetoric

One thought on “U.S. Government on 5G Integrated and Open Networks + ATIS on U.S. 6G Leadership

  1. I really don’t get the race to 5G. Wireless clearly has utility, primarily in allowing one to have devices that are untethered. Much of this is already achieved with WiFi (something like 70% of mobile traffic is carried on WiFi networks). This just feels like earlier days when people complained we were losing the HD race to Japan (with their analog MUSE system that went nowhere) or how we were behind with SMS applications in the early 2000s.

    The real race should be getting fiber as deep as possible, as that is needed as the backbone for any wireless network.

    And, as the 5G rhetoric 5G continues, it wouldn’t be surprising if something like Elon Musk’s Starlink does an end-around.

    https://viodi.com/2020/05/13/a-multi-dimensional-broadband-network-or-is-this-just-pie-in-the-sky/

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