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5G Grows Despite Coronavirus, Manchin Seeks to Show FCC Maps are Inaccurate, A Cashless Future

Elijah Labby

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Photo of Sen. Joe Manchin by the U.S. Senate

5G technology has continued to grow despite the coronavirus pandemic, but some aspects of 5G-compatible technology development have been derailed, CNET reported.

In late 2019, China saw its first cases of the coronavirus, and subsequent lockdowns slowed the production of iPhones and other devices that were supposed to be compatible with the faster networks.

But construction of 5G networks has not slowed since the first outbreaks, and the Federal Communications Commission’s planned October reverse auction is merely one area in which development of such technology is growing.

Strategy Analytics analyst Susan Welsh de Grimaldo was positive about the technology’s continued growth.

“Certainly by the end of the year, the top three [U.S.] carriers will have nationwide networks for 5G,” she said.

Mobile carriers already have a broad reach when it comes to 5G. Between the three largest U.S. carriers, hundreds of millions are covered. In June, T-Mobile became the first network to claim 5G service in all 50 states.

Sen. Joe Manchin seeks to prove inaccuracy of Federal Communications Commission’s broadband maps

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.V., collected over one thousand speed tests from West Virginians in an attempt to show that the Federal Communications Commission’s broadband mapping is inaccurate.

Manchin said that up to 40 percent of the state did not have telehealth access amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“These companies should have a conscience to give us a better service,” he said. “We’re captive. We’re going to stay on top of them and shame them until they make it better.”

He also said that it has taken too long for the agency to acknowledge that their maps are incorrect and that they are not prioritizing rural areas in West Virginia.

“Rural America is getting left behind,” he said. “They have no comeback, no justification to why we aren’t getting covered.”

America is becoming increasingly cashless in wake of pandemic

America is moving toward a cashless future, Axios reported.

The coronavirus pandemic has made Americans increasingly afraid to come into contact with surfaces on which the virus may rest, and physical money and ATMs are often perceived as dirty.

As a result, many vendors have stopped accepting cash, and as many as 63 percent of consumers say they are not using physical money anymore.

However, health experts are skeptical that the coronavirus is spreading through cash. Brian Cole, head of North America products & solutions for Visa, said that the move toward credit cards and digital payments was part of an accelerated push toward a cashless society.

“It’s just been like three years of digital commerce growth being pulled forward into three months,” he said. “People are making purchases that they would have made in person, but they’re making them online now.”

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