Carnegie Mellon University

Axios Event

Axios' 5G and America's Digital Future

Metro21 attended the Axios event on 5G and America's Digital Future on July 16, 2021. The Summit featured Axios chief technology correspondent Ina Fried and national technology correspondent Kim Hart unpacking the efforts to close the digital divide and the future of 5G technologies.

The speakers included

Jessica Rosenworcel, FCC acting chair

Carolyn Lee, Executive Director, The Manufacturing Institute

Cristiano Amon, Qualcomm Incorporated President & CEO

Discussion Highlights

Jessica Rosenworcel covered what the future looks like for 5G implementation as well as its unique challenges and benefits.

  • If 5G implementation is done right, it won't all be focused on our phones. It will be in precision agriculture, manufacturing, and health care, where monitoring and identifying what we need at any given moment with greater clarity and speed than we've ever seen before.
  • Innovation will spur and technologies will get developed with 5G connectivity.
  • Recognized the dearth in 5G equipment supply chain. Most of it is connected to China that has questionable security.

Cristiano Amon discussed why 5G will be critical in the coming years and what tangible changes the average tech user will experience with its implementation.

  • 5G is going to be how all of us are going to connect to the Internet. It is this transformative technology that at the end of the day will get everything connected to the cloud 100% of the time in a reliable manner. It is the new electricity. We won’t talk about it all the time, we’ll just assume it’s there working for all of us.
  • 5G is critical infrastructure, no different than the power grid and railroads and ports and roads.
  • The US built a nationwide 4G network and it was the first country to build it. New innovation spurred around this 4G network in out innovation driven economy.

Carolyn Lee unpacked how 5G technology will affect the manufacturing sector, and the importance of moving forward strategically.

  • Efficiency, of course, is key to manufacturing competitiveness. The deployment of 5G will help us speed up inventory management, supply chain management, logistics, etc.
  • 5G will create new opportunities, new jobs, new skills for human workers. More widespread adoption will allow for more companies to be able to manage their workflow, help their employees, and overall be more efficient.”