FCC Wins Battle In Small Cell Litigation?

— The FCC notched a victory Thursday in the court fight over its order pre-empting city and state laws on fees and timelines for 5G equipment installation. The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals denied a request from several cities, including Seattle and California’s San Jose and Huntington Beach, to halt implementation of the order while the litigation is pending. The court sided with the FCC, which opposed the request, finding that the cities failed to show that there would be “irreparable harm” if the order takes effect in part as planned Jan. 14. Republican Commissioner Brendan Carr, who spearheaded the order, cheered the ruling as “more good news for U.S. leadership on 5G.”

— Win some, lose some: The 10th Circuit, based in Denver, also on Thursday granted a request from the cities to transfer the case to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in California. The FCC, Verizon, Sprint and industry trade groups had opposed the transfer.

Source: POLITICO Morning Tech

Well, with the transfer to the 9th Circus it will not be long before we are reading about a reversal of this decision. The 9th Circus is the most liberal anti-capitalism court in the Nation. I would give the Cities a win and the 5G Providers a loss. This issue will most likely end up at the Supreme Court.

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NYT: 5G Is Coming This Year. Here’s What You Need to Know.

The transition to new fifth-generation cellular networks, known as 5G, will affect how you use smartphones and many other devices. Let’s talk about the essentials.

By Don Clark Dec. 31, 2018

In 2019, a big technology shift will finally begin. It’s a once-in-a-decade upgrade to our wireless systems that will start reaching mobile phone users in a matter of months.

But this is not just about faster smartphones. The transition to new fifth-generation cellular networks — known as 5G for short — will also affect many other kinds of devices, including industrial robots, security cameras, drones and cars that send traffic data to one another. This new era will leap ahead of current wireless technology, known as 4G, by offering mobile internet speeds that will let people download entire movies within seconds and most likely bring big changes to video games, sports and shopping.

Officials in the United States and China see 5G networks as a competitive edge. The faster networks could help spread the use of artificial intelligence and other cutting-edge technologies.

The crucial questions are how consumers will benefit from 5G?  Initially, only users living in densely populated areas will have 5G access via short-range mmWave devices. AT&T and Verizon are focusing on parts and pockets of cities with a point to point services, not mobile cell phone service. They plan to use lower frequencies later that go much farther than the mmWave currently in use, but that will be 2020 or beyond. According to the NYT article, this will be mobile service. In the meantime, T-Mobile and Sprint will be offering lower frequency devices for cellular service, not point to point.

As you read the article, it does not appear that rural users will be getting a 5G services soon. At least not until the lower frequency 5G is available, but only mobile services, no point to point service.

“I wouldn’t buy a 5G phone until it supports 5G in one of the lower-frequency bands,” Mr. Thelander said. “For all operators but Sprint, this means at least late 2019, and more likely 2020.”

It looks like the first rural user investment will have to be a 5G to a WiFi hotspot.

With the line of sight requirements and short-range limitations. 5G is not a rural friendly technology.

RCRC: Rural Broadband Update – No 5G Acceleration

In Verizon’s quarterly earnings call with media and shareholders, the nationwide carrier revealed it does not intend to accelerate the buildout of its 5G network. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently finalized a rule and order that will preempt local government oversight of broadband deployment to promote 5G buildouts but the latest news from Verizon suggests the rule has minimal impact on carriers’ 5G plans. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai also claimed the rule would facilitate 5G deployment in rural areas, but the FCC’s lone Democrat, Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, said the new rule will do nothing to change “the hard economics of rural deployment.”

The FCC pointed to complaints from Verizon as justification for their controversial rule that preempts local fees and regulations of broadband deployment. The FCC passed the rule over the fierce objection of RCRC and other state and local government groups. The rule is estimated to save nationwide carriers over $2 billion in regulatory fees but it appears these savings will not lead to more broadband deployment.

Source: RCRC The Barbed Wire [Highlight Added]

This is why rural America is not going to see 5G anytime in the near future, the cost is too great for the population density.  If you do not have 4G now, you are not going to see 5G for a long long time, if ever. Rural America needs to join the Community Network movement and take control of their own destiny and not rely on big telco to bring them high-speed internet.

C|NET: In Farm Country, Forget Broadband. You Might Not Have Internet At All

5G is around the corner, yet pockets of America still can’t get basic internet access

C|NET BB

 

 

This is part of CNET’s “Crossing the Broadband Divide” series exploring the challenges of getting internet access to everyone.

[…]

This corner of Iowa, where I grew up, isn’t alone. While US carriers are busy promising super-speedy 5G wireless service, pockets of the country still have slow or even no internet. In many rural areas, there are only one or two providers, and the service available is pricey and spotty. Hospitals, schools and other critical groups don’t have fast-enough internet to function. Federal and state governments have provided billions of dollars to companies to build out speedy fiber networks, but outdated and undetailed maps make it tough to identify areas in need.

[…]

Continue reading HERE.

Many of the problems in this article can be applied to rural California Counties.  It is an ROI issue, which is driven by population density.  You can look at the US Census maps and figure out the probability of getting broadband access. The problem is acerbated when considering 5G service as the cell tower coverage is measured in square yards, rather than square miles.  If you do not have broadband now, the probability of getting 5G anytime soon is very low, if not zero.

Forbes: Five Ways 5G Will Rock Our World

Forbes interviewed a number of 5G experts and technologists to get their insights. Here are five areas where they see 5G making its mark.

1. Cord-Cutting En Masse

2. Distributed AI

3. High-Speed Data Backbone for Autonomous Tech

4. The Doctor Is In—24/7

5. Every Experience Will Be Augmented

Read the details HERE.

If you live in a rural neighbor do not get too excited, as you are last on the list to get 5G.

Analysis: What the Millimeter Wave Auction Bidders List Reveals About Carriers’ Plans for 5G

Three of the nation’s four largest wireless carriers are poised to bid in the upcoming FCC auctions of millimeter wave spectrum, according to a new FCC public notice. Millimeter wave spectrum is expected to support 5G wireless services offering speeds as high as a gigabit per second or more. And although some people have argued that millimeter wave 5G is unlikely to be deployed in rural areas, several small rural carriers also are on the list of potential millimeter wave auction bidders released by the commission.

[. . .]

Rural Carriers

Some people have argued that the short range that millimeter wave spectrum can support makes it unsuitable for deployment in sparsely populated rural areas. Nevertheless, some rural carriers appear on the lists of potential millimeter wave auction bidders.

Several of these are Verizon LTE in Rural America (LRA) partners, suggesting either that those companies may be hoping Verizon will share its 5G technology with them as it has done in the past or simply illustrating that Verizon LRA partners are some of the most successful rural wireless carriers.

It’s also possible that rural carriers are interested in millimeter wave spectrum as a means of extending fixed high-speed broadband wireless into outlying suburban areas of metro markets, in competition with cable and telco landline broadband providers – a strategy that some rural-focused wireless internet service providers including Rise Broadband already have used.

Read the full article HERE.

 

Verizon 5G Field Report

I was in Sacramento for a medical appointment and had about 30 minutes to spare and went looking for one of the Verizon 5G Cells in Sacramento. According to a Sacramento City Press Release with the locations of the cells, there should have been one at 2032 Q street. If it was there I could not find it. My assumption was it would be attached to a utility pole. One of the issues, I was not sure what a Verizon 5G Cell would look like. However, as a retired Electronics Warfare Office and amateur radio operator, I would recognize one if I saw one. I did not see anything that looked like a 5G cell on utility poles at 2032 Q Street.

RCRWireless News has a report from Houston:

Verizon 5G small Cell

Verizon’s official launch of its 5G fixed wireless access service is only two days old, but Mike Thelander and Emil Olbrich of Signals Research Group are already on the ground in Houston, Texas, field-testing the live network’s capabilities.

Houston is one of four initial launch markets for the Verizon 5G Home internet service. Speaking to RCR Wireless News from Houston, Thelander, CEO and founder of SRG, started off with the caveat that he hasn’t had a chance to analyze the data yet, so his remarks were observational — but nonetheless said that Verizon’s 5G TF radio interface at 28 GHz is performing as-advertised, and in fact described the 5G TF air interface as “very phenomenal.”

Verizon 5g interface

Rest of the article is HERE, including this good news:

SRG had previously conducted similar independent testing of Verizon’s 5G TF test network earlier this year and found that the millimeter-wave signals were much more resilient than expected at distances of up to several thousand feet from a site and in challenging non-line-of-sight conditions. Though the results from this week’s testing aren’t officially in, Thelander said they saw much the same signal behavior on the live 5G TF network