“By 2035, 5G Will Enable $12.3 Trillion of global Economic output and support 22 million jobs Worldwide.”

- Ronan Dunne, CEO, Verizon Consumer Group

5G wireless networks are expected to be 100 times faster than current 4G LTE networks. This will enable global scale killer applications such as self-driving cars, the Internet of things (IOT), mobile streaming of 4K videos, real-time hologram-based collaboration, and lag-free high definition gaming.

To realize this vision, many new 5G broadcast locations are needed because high frequency 5G signals cannot travel farther than 100 meters. It is estimated that more than 1 million new 5G cell towers must be added in the United States alone.

International Data Corporation (IDC) expects over two million—by 2021. By comparison, the existing 2G/3G/4G network, built over many years, has just over 200,000 cell towers. As 5G initially rolls out in major metropolitan areas, we believe more conventional “macro” cell towers will also be needed to fully connect rural and non-rural America. One macro tower can serve 1 million devices in an area the size of Chicago, whereas one 5G small tower can serve 1 million devices in an area the size of Grant Park in Chicago. FCC Commissioner Michael O’Rielley said in October 2019, “macro towers will continue to be the primary means for providing service to many Americans, especially with the emphasis on mid band spectrum [4G].” Therefore, we believe the 5G revolution will mean new opportunities for macro towers as well as small towers, both of which we intend to develop.

“In the global race to 5G, the stakes are high-it is about economic leadership for the next decade. wireless providers are projected to spend #275 Billion in the U.S. to Build 5G”

- Brendan Carr, FCC Commissioner

FCC Eases 5G Tower

The United States government sees 5G as national agenda for economic and technological leadership in the next decade. Accordingly, in late 2018 the FCC approved rules aimed at speeding up the deployment of small cells and other 5G network equipment by regulating in part the fees and timelines cities and states can impose on wireless network operators and other wireless players. The agency passed the rules with all commissioners voting in support.

The 3 Speeds of 5G (Low, Mid, High)

Not all 5G service are the same. The 5G spectrum is actually divided into 3 distinct speeds, with different set of challenges and opportunities for cell site deployment.

  • Low Band (600-700MHz) – Hundreds of miles of coverage with data speeds from 30-250 megabits per second (Mbps). Low Band 5G antennas can be installed on conventional macro-towers similar to what are used for current 4G networks.
  • Mid Band (2.5/3.5 GHz) – Several miles of coverage with data speeds from 100-900Mbps. Mid Band 5G antennas can be installed on conventional macro-towers similar to what are used for current 4G networks, but they must be within several miles of each together.
  • High Band (millimeter wave 25-39 GHz) – This is what 5G dreams are made of. Killer applications such as self-driving cars, high realism hologram-basedcollaboration and gaming, or remote surgery, will only be possible in the High Band range. However, High Band 5G antennas cannot be simply installed on conventional 4G macro-towers. High Band 5G antennas are actually a network of 20-30 small cell antennas that provide coverage to a square mile. Therefore, developing a High Band 5G cell network requires 20-30 small cell sites (such as rooftops, kiosk, lamp post) instead of 1 macro-tower on the outskirts of town.
    Learn more about Small Cells.

Local Challenge of Cell Towers and Opportunity

While everyone wants lightning speed wireless networks, not everyone likes the appearance of cell towers on the sides of freeways or outskirts of town. While new FCC rules will make it easier to deploy new small cell sites with less red tape, local city councils will still have a say regarding tower aesthetics. We see this challenge as an opportunity for us to partner with regional cell tower contractors with good local government relationships to help us with our cell site projects. Once installed, each cell site functions as a multi-tenant tower, hosting antennas for different wireless carriers or businesses.

Available Cell Sites from Digital Locations

Digital Locations is an aggregator and developer of cell sites for the 5G revolution. We have over 110,000 cell sites under contract with property owners.

owners all over the United States and are ready for 5G activation. In the Low Band and Mid Band 5G macro-tower markets, we operate in a growing space dominated by multi-billion dollar tower companies such as American Tower (NYSE: AMT) and Crown Castle  (NYSE: CCI ).

However, the market for 1 million new High Band 5G small cell sites to cover all of America is still wide open for new players to the become the next American Tower or Crown Castle!