The Great Internet Divide: Does banning Huawei 5G bifurcate the internet?

Hey there, Pynksters! :mage:t3:

Over the past years, the relationship between China and the United States has been bumpy at best. Events such as the US-China trade war, the UK and US ban on Huawei equipment, and Chinese interference with Hong Kong law are some of the dominant topics that come to mind. With so much going on, it is only natural to enquire whether the US and China are waging a cold war for world hegemony focused on technological supremacy.

Central to the issue of technological supremacy is Huawei’s 5G network equipment. The benefits of 5G are substantial, involving speed upgrades, lower latency, enhance capacity, increased bandwidth. :thinking:

  • Upgraded Speed - increase network speed by x100, allowing for transfers of data within seconds.
  • Lower Latency - remote controlling devices in near-real-time, benefiting industries such as agriculture, manufacturing, logistics, gaming, VR and AR.
  • Enhanced Capacity - increase network capacity by x1000, creating a fertile environment for IoT development; automate supply chain management processes and enable smart devices to communicate in what is set to become a world of smart homes and smart cities.
  • Increased Bandwidth - optimise network traffic and smooth handling of usage spikes by providing seamless connectivity to live stream in crowded areas (e.g. stadiums); allow businesses to turn large volumes of data into actionable knowledge using big data analytics.

Some argue that the ban of Huawei 5G equipment would bifurcate the internet between a Chinese network and a Non-Chinese network world. :scream:

  • Do you believe the internet will truly bifurcate? If yes, what would be the consequences?
  • Will the ban on Huawei’s 5G equipment impede Chinese leadership in network infrastructure?
  • Will the US or Europe catch-up or surpass China in network infrastructure capabilities?
  • Could we see higher barriers to entry for US companies on the Chinese market?

Some additional food for thought: https://www.economist.com/leaders/2020/07/18/china-v-america

What do you think? :nerd_face:

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I think these are very scary times for the US, Trump has an agenda and he doesn’t seem to care about consequences. I think a separation will hurt us and countries need to work together. China is very strong in technology capabilities and working with them as opposed to against them is more beneficial to everyone. I’m not super knowledgeable on this so I look forward to reading what others think.

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@KarenM indeed these are scary times with Trump, I hope you guys can kick him out of office soon and without much controversy.

Although we have to remember that the US-China rivarly was already heating up under Obama. Some serious efforts were done back then to contain China with the Pivot to Asia policy and the Trans Pacific Partnership.

  • Do you believe the internet will truly bifurcate? If yes, what would be the consequences?

I think it will, and the consequence will be the end of the internet as a world wide web. De facto spheres of influence will be established, and countries will have to opt for the chinese or american system.
Possibly Europeans go for non-alignment on this and develop a third option.

  • Will the ban on Huawei’s 5G equipment impede Chinese leadership in the space?

It won’t, there is currently no feasible alternative. That’s the weak-spot for Americans and Europeans right now.
The UK just U-turned on their go-ahead for Huawei, but besides them and the US, other countries are going forward with Huawei.
This of course may change soon, we’ll have to see.

https://www.ft.com/content/7d909f98-67b8-4dd2-b31d-b020f7d960e5

  • Will the US or Europe catch-up or surpass China in network infrastructure capabilities?

Catch-up is possible, and probable, but I don’t see the US and Europe seriously partnering on this. So, what the EU decides on this matter will have far reaching consequences for the balance of power between America and China.

  • Could we see higher barriers to entry for US companies on the Chinese market?

100%

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I guess very much so.Tesla’s Starlink seems to be agood candidate for the West.

Not really. Eastern Countries are already well advanced and equipped for the Space Era. Many of the best space engineers are actually from China, India, Russia and Iran.
Beside this we also have to consider the blockchain technology has also a GREAT say into this. So there are many many variables able to determine the final result.

It is very possible IF Western Countries are able to find sustainable solutions. What I don’t like of the 5G tech for instance is that it is not very clear if it is harming for our health. I’d like an alternative wiich is proven to be safe more than anything else.

This is for sure if both Establishments go on in trying to boycott each other every time the chance comes.
Maybe as Al was saying in the other topic about the Artificial Intelligence, I am way too idealist but I truly hope in a future world no more COMPETITION BASED but more COOPERATIVE in the way even the “two sides” of the world operate.

Going back to the Space Era it doesn’t seems to be feaseble to go in Space with such inner divisions (meaning inside our own planet)…or are we going to be the ones exporting war and divisions around this Solar System and beyond?

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Great topic @RazvanPaun, thanks for the excellent question!

In my opinion the divide is pretty much there already. China has massive restrictions on what people can and cannot access via the internet meaning they use a lot of alternative apps and programs that we do not have (or do not use) in the UK (apologies, I am speaking from a UK perspective here, I realise it may vary country to country) WeChat, Alipay and, until quite recently, TikTok.

I think the current relations between the Chinese government and the US and UK will definitely make that situation more pronounced and the divide deeper but, as it hasn’t been a huge issue in the past, I’m not ranking it too high on my list of global concerns, if that makes sense. If a hard, technical divide does happen, I am sure some savvy entrepreneur will figure out a way one can access the other anyway. That’s assuming the need is there and it might not be in the case of most, regular internet users.

I think, as investors, this divide could be seen as a good thing. With massive interest in ‘Western’ companies looking to fill the chasmic void left by Huawei, the needs of the west in rolling out the 5g framework, will undoubtedly promote innovation and competition in the market in this space.

With regards to barriers of entry for China, I think that India has set quite the precedent in banning so many apps the other day and, with the recent news in the UK about the possible murder and encampment of Muslims within the country I don’t think we’re heading anywhere closer to positive relationships with China any time soon unfortunately. So we will continue to see barriers build up over the next few years to come I think.

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No. There will be technology and software coming to minimise the gap, a good example of that is bridging between OS and Windows.

Not at all - the technology used in space tends to be older and sturdier than one on the surface of the planet, anyway.

This is extremely unlikely. US has slowed it’s future technological rate of progress by privatising education, and Europe that did not is much smaller & fragmented in terms of it’s research base.

It is inevitable.

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Guys, just to clarify. @RazvanPaun wasn’t asking about space as in outer space. He meant ‘this space’ as In that area of interest. Will the ban affect China’s leadership in 5G.

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Ooooops…sorry I misunderstood :sweat_smile::sweat_smile::sweat_smile::sweat_smile::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl:

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Funny how words can be interpreted different ways @Al_Wallace! Glad you clarified.

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Thank you for raising this up Al. I amended the question accordingly to avoid confusion. :laughing:

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Sorry to you too for real about messing thing up, Razvan! As I put hands on my pc i will edit my reply accordingly! Thanks for your patience guys :innocent:

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Dw - it’s not a big deal :laughing: I’m always happy to read your contributions.

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I think you are raising an interesting point here @Tradelta . (Spoiler alert: this is an upcoming topic on the weekly focus agenda.) What are the chances that a truly competitive, global scale, satellite internet connection could compete with 5G networks?

The beauty of 5G lies in higher speed, increased bandwidth and enhanced network capacity. But what about 5G coverage? One relies on the assumption that connectivity must be at the forefront of technological advancements once we move from a traditional economy to an economy of things where my washing machine could negotiate electricity prices with my provider and order washing liquid when the stock is low. 5G as such is great but is it technically achievable to provide the necessary coverage to allow the world to shift to digital in such a way that people living in remote areas benefit from the same level of access?

On the other hand, there is blockchain technology. Out of the top 10 biggest blockchain hubs in the world, 5 of them can be found in China, according to Binance. Not only can blockchain infrastructure effectively manage the flow of information, but it can reduce the likelihood of cyber-attacks whilst upholding the privacy of users’ data. IBM and Samsung are working on such integrations - see the hyperlink above.

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