US telecom providers delay 5G deployment after all

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US telco operators AT&T and Verizon Communications have decided to postpone the deployment of 5G in the C-band frequencies for the time being. Earlier, both telecom operators refused delays requested by the US government, stating delays would equal destruction of capital.

Both telecom operators have backed down at the last minute and postponed the deployment of their 5G networks in the C-band frequencies. According to AT&T, the organization voluntarily responded to the US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg’s call for a two-week delay of 5G deployment in C-band frequencies. In addition, the telecom operator plans to turn off 5G frequencies around airports for another six months, which was requested as well.

Verizon Communications responded similarly. This telecom operator is suspending the launch of its 5G services in C-band frequencies for two weeks. Verizon says this period should provide the necessary clarity on how best and most safely to approach the deployment in these frequencies.

Interference with avionics

Earlier, the US Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Agency (FAA) requested Verizon and AT&T to delay their deployments to prevent possible interference of 5G signals and avionics, such as radio signal-based altimeters. The telco operaters responded with a firm no. The FAA noted it would meet AT&T and Verizon in court should the White House not interfere within a day. The cause of AT&T’s and Verizon’s change of heart is unclear, but the latter gives a hint.

FAA response

The American aviation authority FAA is satisfied with the response of the telecom operators. According to the FAA, the two-week postponement makes it possible to solve the potential problem surrounding 5G and interference with avionics based on radio signals.