China plans to pull further ahead of the US in 5G

Microchip

The fractious relationship between the US and China is changing global supply chains. China now plans to leapfrog the US in an essential component of the future economy, increasing divisions further.

When Beijing decided that China needed to become an atomic power in the 1960s, its centrally-planned state directed significant resources and resolve into developing a nuclear deterrent.

Within 32 months of its decision to ‘go nuclear’ China had detonated an atomic bomb, launched its first nuclear missile and exploded its first hydrogen bomb.

After Donald Trump’s attack on its technology industry, China’s Politburo is planning to direct its energy towards another technological goal, this time in the field of semiconductors. The move could secure the country’s position at the vanguard of 5G technology – but means the chip war is now becoming deeply embedded in global trade.

Microchips in everything

In the future, there will be chips with everything. A microchip is basically a set of electronic circuits on a small piece of semiconductor material. These tiny components are the building blocks that drive our modern world – and China is about to throw everything it can into the development of third-generation semiconductors.

These components will be better in terms of speed, size and heat dissipation. They will make electronic devices and internet communication much more powerful and efficient – with greater functionality than we see today. They will be essential building blocks of 5G communication systems and the resulting ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) that will emerge. The industry believes that, with the development of this technology, the third generation of chips will completely replace the first and second-generation semiconductor materials that are still in use today.

The development of the IoT will see chips embedded in billions of everyday objects. These will allow devices such as vehicles, fridges and cooling and heating systems to become ‘smart’. The chips can send and receive data which can used for remote management by human or artificial intelligence. It will eventually be used to develop sensing systems for self-driving cars – and even managing whole cities’ traffic systems and peak energy demand. Just as we have become reliant on the benefits of smartphones in our everyday life in less than two decades, the benefits of the IoT look likely to be assimilated into everyday life over the next 20 years or so.

After Chinese company Huawei managed to leapfrog the US in the development of equipment such as antennae for 5G infrastructure, the US is trying to cut off the supply of essential components and funding to Huawei and other Chinese companies under the banner of ‘national security’. The main aim, however, is to prevent China making further progress in developing the infrastructure that will drive the world of tomorrow.

View Full Article– published by Charles Stanley on 8th September 2020

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