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Huawei row: UK to let Chinese firm help build 5G network

April 24, 2019

 

The government has approved the supply of equipment by Chinese telecoms firm Huawei for the UK's new 5G data network despite warnings of a security risk.

 

There is no formal confirmation but the Daily Telegraph says Huawei will build "non-core" components such as antennas.

 

The US wants its allies in the "Five Eyes" intelligence grouping - the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand - to exclude the company.

 

Huawei has denied that its work poses any risks of espionage or sabotage.

But Australia has already said it is siding with Washington - which has spoken of "serious concerns over Huawei's obligations to the Chinese government and the danger that poses to the integrity of telecommunications networks in the US and elsewhere".

 

The government has approved the supply of equipment by Chinese telecoms firm Huawei for the UK's new 5G data network despite warnings of a security risk.

 

There is no formal confirmation but the Daily Telegraph says Huawei will build "non-core" components such as antennas.

 

The US wants its allies in the "Five Eyes" intelligence grouping - the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand - to exclude the company.

 

Huawei has denied that its work poses any risks of espionage or sabotage.

 

But Australia has already said it is siding with Washington - which has spoken of "serious concerns over Huawei's obligations to the Chinese government and the danger that poses to the integrity of telecommunications networks in the US and elsewhere".

 

5G is the next (fifth) generation of mobile internet connectivity, promising much faster data download and upload speeds, wider coverage and more stable connections.

 

The world is going mobile and existing spectrum bands are becoming congested, leading to breakdowns, particularly when many people in one area are trying to access services at the same time.

 

5G is also much better at handling thousands of devices simultaneously, from phones to equipment sensors, video cameras to smart street lights.

 

Current 4G mobile networks can offer speeds of about 45Mbps (megabits per second) on average and experts say 5G - which is starting to be rolled out in the UK this year - could achieve browsing and downloads up to 20 times faster.

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