The FCC announces a new $9billion 5G fund to ensure American farmers and other rural residents get access to high-speed internet
- Nearly 40 percent of rural Americans don’t have access to broadband internet
- The FCC is starting a $9billion fund to help 5G providers expand coverage
- $1billion from the fund will be earmarked for proposals to serve farmers
The broadband internet boom mostly missed rural America.
Around 39 percent of the country’s rural population report they can’t get high speed internet in their homes, compared to just four percent of urban residents.
This week the Federal Communications Commission announced a new plan to make sure the same thing doesn’t happen when 5G networks come online in the next several years.
The FCC will make $9billion in new funding available to help expand 5G coverage to rural America, where 39 percent of residents say they can’t currently get broadband internet
The agency is creating a $9 billion fund to help 5G providers build network infrastructure in rural areas with small populations or difficult terrain.
The agency will earmark $1billion for those who target farmers and ranchers and other agriculture industry workers.
‘5G has the potential to bring many benefits to American consumers and businesses, including wireless networks that are more responsive, more secure, and up to 100 times faster than today’s 4G LTE networks,’ FCC chairman Ajit Pai said in a statement, reported by Engadget.
‘We want to make sure that rural Americans enjoy these benefits, just as residents of large urban areas will.’
FCC chairman Ajit Pai says $1billion from the new 5G Fund will be earmarked to specifically cover areas used by agriculture industry workers
5G network infrastructure is still being developed across the country, but industry watches expect consumer demand to take off in 2020, when Apple is expected to launch its first 5G iPhones
5G is a mobile coverage network that provides internet access that’s significantly fasted than current broadband connections, and which could make data-intensive internet content like videos and large app downloads available in just a few seconds
$4.5 billion of the fund will be available through a reverse auction, in which 5G providers submit proposals for how they would cover a particular area, and the FCC will allocate funding to bidders with the best proposal.
The 5G Fund will replace a previous fund the FCC had established, the Mobility Fund Phase II, which was meant to subsidize 4G LTE coverage in rural areas.
The FCC put a halt to the fund after deeming the data it was being given by 4G LTE providers wasn’t reliable, so the remaining funds will be rolled into the 5G Fund.
5G is a new mobile data network that’s said to outperform current residential broadband internet and give near instantaneous access to data-intensive internet content like HD videos and large file downloads.
The first 5G handsets were released in the US earlier this year, but coverage is still limited.
That’s likely to change in 2020, when Apple is rumored to launch its first 5G iPhone, which industry analysts say could come in as many as four different models.
WHAT IS 5G AND WHAT DOES IT DO?
The evolution of the G system started in 1980 with the invention of the mobile phone which allowed for analogue data to be transmitted via phone calls.
Digital came into play in 1991 with 2G and SMS and MMS capabilities were launched.
Since then, the capabilities and carrying capacity for the mobile network has increased massively.
More data can be transferred from one point to another via the mobile network quicker than ever.
5G is expected to be up to 1,000 times faster than the currently used 4G.
Whilst the jump from 3G to 4G was most beneficial for mobile browsing and working, the step to 5G will be so fast they become almost real-time.
That means mobile operations will be just as fast as office-based internet connections.
Potential uses for 5g include:
- Simultaneous translation of several languages in a party conference call
- Self-driving cars can stream movies, music and navigation information from the cloud
- A full length 8GB film can be downloaded in six seconds.
5G is expected to be so quick and efficient it is possible it could start the end of wired connections.
By the end of 2020, industry estimates claim 50 billion devices will be connected to 5G.
The evolution of from 1G to 5G. The predicted speed of 5G is more than 1Gbps – 1,000 times greater than the existing speed of 4G and could be implemented in laptops of the future