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­.s. Pumps $400 Million Into Next-Generation Wireless Research

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U.S. National Science Foundation logo.

The U.S. National Science Foundation is investing more than $400 million in next-generation wireless research over the next seven years.

Credit: National Science Foundation

The U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) will invest more than $400 million over the next seven years to fund next-generation wireless research to enable super-fast mobile service.

U.S. officials expect the investments, announced last week, will accelerate the transition to next-generation 5G mobile service, potentially offering speeds of 10 Gbps and enabling a swift expansion of the Internet of things (IoT).

John Holdren, assistant to President Barack Obama for science and technology, says these services will make self-driving cars, an "always on" IoT, smart cities, new virtual reality offerings, and video to assist police, firefighters, and emergency medical responders a reality.

The NSF grants include $50 million as part of an alliance with more than 20 mobile companies and trade groups to deploy advanced wireless testing sites in four U.S. cities, which will feature the rollout of small cells to increase signals of high-band, millimeter-wave spectrum.

The announcement follows a vote by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to unlock almost 11 GHz of high-band spectrum to 5G and IoT services.

NSF also will invest $350 million over the next seven years on basic research and testing of next-generation wireless technologies.

"History has shown us that when we make sustained federal investments in fundamental academic research and in public-private partnerships...we as a nation reap the benefits," Holdren says.

From IDG News Service
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