Josh Rogin’s April 22 op-ed, “The U.S. is losing the race for 5G” misrepresented the work that the Federal Communications Commission and the Trump administration are doing to advance American leadership in 5G. Mr. Rogin suggested that U.S. companies are building networks using high-band spectrum while other nations will more properly rely on mid-band spectrum. This is false.
Because 5G aims to deliver both good wireless coverage and high capacity, strong 5G networks will require low-, mid- and high-band spectrum. That’s why the FCC’s 5G FAST Plan focuses on making all three available. For example, the FCC has already made a substantial amount of mid-band spectrum available at 3.5 GHz, with commercial deployments planned in the coming months and an auction planned next year. We’re also hard at work to free up mid-band spectrum in the 2.5 GHz and 3.7-4.2 GHz bands.
With respect to low-band spectrum, one wireless carrier is already working on deploying 5G in the 600 MHz band. And the FCC is holding three high-band spectrum auctions for 5G deployment.
Mr. Rogin compared high-band spectrum to Betamax and mid-band spectrum to VHS, but these two types of spectrum aren’t competitors; they’re complements. That’s why, with our all-of-the-above spectrum strategy, the United States is well positioned to lead in 5G.
Julius Knapp, Washington
The writer is chief of the Federal Communications Commission’s Office of Engineering and Technology.