If the past few years were about testing and development of 5G technology, this year is the time to quit lip service and show some real applications.
Chinese tech giant Huawei, on the one hand, is ready to launch its first 5G foldable phone and go head-to-head with Samsung, and on the other hand, is busy with its 5G deployment globally amid mixed attitudes and responses.
Clearly, the 5G race is heating up and entering a critical period.
Though Huawei is under severe pressure from both global competitors and governments, Thailand has just launched a Huawei 5G testbed in disregard of U.S. pressure on its allies to hang up on Huawei.
Other Asian countries also show their business as usual with Huawei.
Apart from Huawei’s 5G foldable phones, mobile phone manufacturers including Samsung, OnePlus and LG, have either confirmed or hinted at the launch of 5G foldable phones this year.
Fraser Cameron, director of the EU-Asia Centre in Brussels, pointed out that after a serious review of Huawei’s technology, the intelligence and security organization based in Britain has determined that Huawei is not a security threat.
“The British authority says that they have actually put Huawei technology through the processing plan to their intelligence headquarters, Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), and think there is no real security threat. So, if the Brits can do this, one would ask the question why can’t the Americans do this, or other people do this?”
Andy Mok, a non-resident fellow at Center for China and Globalization, stated that 5G was more than high Internet speed.
"Those '90 percent underwater' part of the 'iceberg' that people didn’t know about 5G would trigger the essential breakthroughs for the industry 4.0," he said.
"All of these applications that are for faster download speed to consumers is sexy, but I think what’s really important is the 90 percent underwater part that people don’t see.
"What 5G is enabling, is hundreds of billions of devices to talk to each other. And that would change every industry, whether we are talking about transportation in driverless cars, health care in telemedicine, urban management with smart cities."
Professor Benjamin Chiao, a network expert at Paris School of Business, who was based in Hong Kong, stated that the high speed of 5G would bring on huge surprises to consumers.
"A lot of things we probably don't even know yet, but most experts in the field said that the real breakthroughs would be what they called industry 4.0.
"5G will definitely shock users in terms of speed at selected sides because it is still far from being implemented outdoors with extremely high-speed everywhere."
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