Emergency response benefits . . .
The central British Columbia community of Lac la Hache will soon have faster internet service care of Huawei. The service will be provided by ABC Communications, a small B.C. telecom, using Huawei’s rural broadband service known as ‘Massive MIMO’ – which can also be used in next-generation 5G networks. One local official said the project will enhance the efficiency of the community’s wildfire disaster management by allowing local residents to access timely disaster information through LTE networks. The project is reported to be a trial run for Huawei’s broader rural connectivity project for remote communities across Canada.
3G and 4G initiatives lost in global firestorm . . .
While Huawei’s participation in 5G development has been the focus of a global diplomatic firestorm, its extensive 3G and 4G services have received less scrutiny. Huawei has been expanding these less costly services to under-served regions around the world since 2017. The company has provided 3G and 4G across the Far North, including in Iqaluit and Inuvik. While some recognize the importance of Huawei’s rural connectivity project, as there is no alternative corporation currently targeting global rural regions, others caution that Canada should be wary of Huawei’s expanding influence in Canada.
A balanced approach . . .
The trial project in this rural Canadian community stands as a reminder to Canada that discussions around security issues related to Huawei should also weigh the benefits the company is providing to Canada’s vast northern regions and rural communities. Instead of supporting blanket bans on emergent tech based solely on country of origin, Ottawa would do well to pursue an approach identifying areas most vulnerable to national security and building stringent regulatory frameworks around them.
- Bloomberg: How to Shield Silicon Valley: When it comes to critical technologies, the U.S. needs to vet Chinese buyers more carefully
- The Globe and Mail: Huawei pushes ahead with rural internet strategy in Canada despite political controversy over 5G security
- Huawei Technologies Co.: Communications for All