By Chloe Aiello
The popularity of 5G devices at this week's Mobile World Congress shows that device manufacturers, networks, and even nations are aggressively pushing for 5G, more so than for past generations of wireless, Doug Michau, head of U.S. product operations at Motorola told Cheddar.
"If you look at just what happened between [Consumer Electronics Showcase] and MWC, you went from four devices announced to over 20 devices announced, just in the period of about six weeks," Michau said. "We are seeing a greater push I think on this generation of wireless than I think we have in the past."
Much of that pressure likely comes from a contentious battle between the U.S. and China ー led by Chinese company Huawei ー to be first to 5G.
Even President Trump is in on the effort. He tweeted last week that U.S. companies need to move quickly or risk getting left behind.
"I want 5G, and even 6G, technology in the United States as soon as possible. It is far more powerful, faster, and smarter than the current standard. American companies must step up their efforts, or get left behind," Trump tweeted.
Michau said that 6G is really too far in the future for proper consideration, and that "all focus" will be fixed on 5G for now.
Motorola isn't waiting out the game. The company just got certification in mid-February from the Federal Communications Commission for its 5G Moto Mod, which would enable select phones to upgrade to 5G.
And in the era of $1,000 smartphones, Michau said consumers can expect to pay a pretty penny for new 5G devices ー at least for a while.
"At first the price point is going to be higher, it's a brand new technology, so the cost is going to be higher for early adopters, but it's those who are in greatest need of speed that are willing to pay that," Michau said. "Motorola, we ... have always been very strong at bringing those aspirational features down to the mid-tier and we will continue to try to drive that for 5G."
For full interview click here.