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Japanese companies prefer to use 5G networks of domestic carriers

TOKYO (Reuters) – An overwhelming majority of the Japanese companies have no plans to use 5G mobile networks by the chinese Huawei or other foreign companies, preferring instead to rely on the domestic telecom providers due to safety concerns, a Reuters poll showed.

FILE PHOTO: A man speaks on his mobile phone next to Huawei’s billboard with 5G technology at the PT Expo in Beijing, China, September 26, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer/File Photo

The Business results of the Survey come amid Washington’s concerns that the Chinese telecom giant, the equipment can be used for espionage. Japanese carriers are set to launch high-speed wireless services next year.

The United States has warned countries against the use of Chinese technology, saying Huawei can be used by Beijing to spy on the West. China and Huawei have strongly rejected the accusations.

In the written comments, no Japanese company singled out Huawei and other foreign companies by name, but they are concern about the safety issues with the use of the equipment of foreign companies.

“It is utterly impossible to determine the products and services of a company that can not dispel the concerns over national security,” a wholesale manager, wrote on the condition of anonymity.

“In terms of 5G-related patents, Chinese companies hold an overwhelmingly dominant position. But it will be difficult to implement, given the possibility of a leakage of information,” a machine maker manager wrote in the May 8-17 survey.

The Corporate-Research shows 88% of Japanese companies said that they are likely to pick domestic telecom providers to the use of 5G, 2% opted for Chinese companies such as Huawei, 1% called Qualcomm Inc, and 11% chose “others”.

About four out of five companies had no specific business plans for the use of high-speed wireless technology, the survey showed. It underscores the fact that Japan is catching up with other countries such as South Korea and the United States have already started with the rollout of 5G services.

About nine out of 10 companies have not secured enough engineers that can deal with cutting-edge technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT).

The survey monthly for Reuters by Nikkei Research, polled 477 large – and medium-sized companies with managers responding on condition of anonymity. Around the 200-220 answer the questions on 5G, and technology.

The japanese telco’s, including the three major carriers – NTT Docomo, KDDI and SoftBank Corp – were formally assigned 5G spectrum by the regulators in the last month, a major milestone prior to the launch of the high-speed wireless services.

The technology, which can provide data speeds of up to 20 times faster than 4G, is regarded as an essential precondition for emerging technologies of self-driving cars and smart cities to AI and augmented reality.

If the underlying technology is vulnerable, it may allow hackers to exploit these products to spy or interfere.

Edited by Jacqueline Wong

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