Where’s My Stuff? Now, Bluetooth and Ultrawideband Can Tell You

Ultrawideband might win out in warehouses, but the rest of us will likely stick with Bluetooth

3 min read
illustration of man's face, surrounded by things
Illustration: Jude Buffum

illustration of man's face, surrounded by things Illustration: Jude Buffum

We all lose things. Think about how much time you’ve spent searching for your keys or your wallet. Now imagine how much time big companies spend searching for lost items. In a hospital, for example, the quest for a crash cart can slow a response team during an emergency, while on a construction site, the hunt for the right tool can lead to escalating delays.

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The Cellular Industry’s Clash Over the Movement to Remake Networks

The wireless industry is divided on Open RAN’s goal to make network components interoperable

13 min read
Photo: George Frey/AFP/Getty Images
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We've all been told that 5G wireless is going to deliver amazing capabilities and services. But it won't come cheap. When all is said and done, 5G will cost almost US $1 trillion to deploy over the next half decade. That enormous expense will be borne mostly by network operators, companies like AT&T, China Mobile, Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone, and dozens more around the world that provide cellular service to their customers. Facing such an immense cost, these operators asked a very reasonable question: How can we make this cheaper and more flexible?

Their answer: Make it possible to mix and match network components from different companies, with the goal of fostering more competition and driving down prices. At the same time, they sparked a schism within the industry over how wireless networks should be built. Their opponents—and sometimes begrudging partners—are the handful of telecom-equipment vendors capable of providing the hardware the network operators have been buying and deploying for years.

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