You’ve heard about 5G, but what is it and how does it impact you?

Published: Jan. 21, 2022 at 6:59 PM EST
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - There’s been back and forth all week long about the rollout of 5G technology.

Cellphone service providers are pushing for it. The Federal Aviation Administration and airports are pushing against it.

But what is 5G, and how does this affect you?

“It really boils down to being more of a political issue between the FAA and the FCC than an actual scientific issue,” said Bob O’Donnell, founder and chief analyst of TECHnalysis Research.

The FAA put a stop to AT&T’s and Verizon’s efforts to roll out 5G cell towers around major airports. The concern, the frequencies could interfere with aircraft radar.

Specifically, an instrument that helps pilots tell how high off the ground they are.

We reached out to Augusta Regional to ask if they’re concerned about the 5G rollout, we’re told they don’t expect it to affect them.

O’Donnell points out the range of frequencies is broad and not likely to interact.

“They’re super far apart so of course it’s not and yet the FAA was trying to say, ‘oh no, there’s gonna be concern, we could have this frequency interrupt and you know it could get in the way.’ That’s kind of like saying, you know if I’m driving around a car in Augusta, is somebody down in Tampa, Florida going to feel the vibrations?”

This only affects AT&T and Verizon users, as well as those who have an iPhone 12, 13, or Samsung Galaxy S21.

O’Donnell says it’s only the U.S. experiencing this issue, where 40 other countries have already been using 5G at their airports for the past 11 months.

“I think that, in less than in six months, they originally said it’s going to be six months, in less than six months, all of these issues will be completely gone. You’ll see 5 band, or 5G mid-band service from all of the carriers around all of these airports, and there will be no issues whatsoever,” said O’Donnell.

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