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Chinese 5G Not Living Up to Its Hype | Voice of America

Chinese 5G Not Living Up to Its Hype | Voice of America

Mounted on rooftops, utility poles and streetlights throughout China since last year are hundreds of thousands of high-tech wireless towers for 5G, a powerful sign of the country’s ambition to lead in new technology. Yet many of them are operational for only half the day.

China Unicom, one of three telecommunication operators, announced in August that its Luoyang branch in Henan province would automatically switch its 5G transmitter stations to sleep mode from 9 p.m. to 9 a.m. because there were few people using them. The other two carriers quickly followed suit and since then have rolled out the same policies in other cities across the country.

“Shutting down base stations is not a manual shutdown, but an automatic adjustment made at a certain time,” Wang Xiaochu, chairman of China Unicom, said at the company’s midyear earnings conference.

5G is one of the biggest technology investments in China’s recent history. Touted as the next big leap forward in digital communication, the 5th generation mobile network technology is supposed to change the world and spur a new digital revolution.

China officially launched its commercial 5G networks in September 2019 with the promise of delivering unprecedented digital speed to support new applications from autonomous driving to virtual surgery. More than a year later, the biggest 5G market is now facing widespread complaints about network speed and skyrocketing costs of deployments.

Signals are hitting walls

To handle more data at higher speeds, 5G uses higher frequencies than current networks. However, the signals travel shorter distances and encounter more interference.

“5G uses ultra-high frequency signals, which are about two to three times higher than the existing 4G signal frequency, so the signal coverage will be limited,” Wang Xiaofei, a communication expert at Tianjin University told Xinhua, the official state-run press agency, last year as

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Pakistan Blocks TikTok, Citing ‘Immoral’ Content | Voice of America

Pakistan Blocks TikTok, Citing ‘Immoral’ Content | Voice of America

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan has blocked online short-video sharing platform TikTok on the grounds of “immoral/indecent” content for viewing in the majority-Muslim nation.

The state regulator said Friday that it had repeatedly instructed the platform to tighten its content monitoring to block access to the “unlawful” material.

“However, the application failed to fully comply with the instructions, therefore, directions were issued for blocking of TikTok application in the country,” said the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, PTA.

The regulator defended the decision, saying the PTA, in a formal warning, had given “considerable time” to the online platform to respond and comply with the instructions.

FILE – A man opens social media app TikTok on his cellphone, in Islamabad, Pakistan, July 21, 2020.

“TikTok has been informed that the authority is open for engagement and will review its decision subject to a satisfactory mechanism by TikTok to moderate unlawful content,” according to the PTA.

There was no immediate reaction from the popular online platform to the blocking of its service by Pakistani authorities.

Amnesty International slammed the ban on TikTok, saying that in the name of a campaign against vulgarity, people are being denied the right to express themselves online.

“The #TikTokBan comes against a backdrop where voices are muted on television, columns vanish from newspapers, websites are blocked and television ads banned,” Amnesty said in a statement posted on Twitter.

TikTok, owned by China-based ByteDance, is also under pressure globally due to security and privacy concerns.

Neighboring India has already blocked access to the social media outlet, along with dozens of other apps developed by Chinese companies, citing cybersecurity concerns.

TikTok is also under scrutiny in other countries, including the United States, the biggest market by revenue for the company.

Dating apps ban

Last month, Pakistan blocked access to five dating apps for

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Honda’s new voice is less Savage, and FCB NY gets another chief creative: Friday Wake-Up Call

Honda’s new voice is less Savage, and FCB NY gets another chief creative: Friday Wake-Up Call

Just briefly

Fake crews: Facebook banned marketing firm Rally Forge for using more than 300 fake accounts to criticize Joe Biden and the Democratic Party on behalf of conservative advocacy group Turning Point USA. The accounts had been commenting mostly on news stories from mainstream outlets like the Washington Post, Fox News, MSNBC, CNN and the New York Times.

Ride along: Google-owned Waymo is, well, test-driving its driverless car ride-hailing service. Riders in Phoenix, Arizona can now hop into one of Waymo several hundred cars—alone—with no driver to potentially spread the coronavirus. The company will still have cars in its fleet that use human safety operators who don’t drive but act as a backup for the AI.

It’s TikToks all the way down: TikTok’s latest ad is a recursive loop, inspired by a video that went viral on the platform that featured Ocean Spray, which has seized on the unexpected attention with its own PR moves. “The new 15-second spot highlights the original video from Nathan Apodaca, known as 420doggface208 on TikTok, who filmed himself sipping Ocean Spray while skateboarding and grooving to Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Dreams,’” writes Ad Age’s Garett Sloane. Surrounding Apodaca are viewers who made their own versions of the video, including Mick Fleetwood himself.

VP debate ratings up: Wednesday’s Kamala Harris-Mike Pence clash drew more than 57 million viewers, up from the 37 million people who watched the 2016 debate between Pence and Tim Kaine, according to CNN.

That does it for today’s Wake-Up Call. Thanks for reading and we hope you are all staying safe and well. For more industry news and insight, follow us on Twitter: @adage. 

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