US Airlines warn of chaos if 5G mobile service is deployed this week

Two days before Verizon and AT&T plan to deploy more segments of their new 5G mobile internet technology, leaders of the nation’s largest air carriers warned again Monday that thousands of flights could be grounded by interference from the technology and that “the nation’s commerce will grind to a halt.” In unusually sharp terms, the airline industry implied in a letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and other top federal officials that Verizon’s and AT&T’s plans could add to the disruptions in the global shipping network that have fueled inflation.

High-speed 5G internet uses so-called C-band frequencies close to those used by aircraft to measure their altitude. The airlines say the technology can interfere with the instruments and create a serious safety hazard. Verizon and AT&T have argued that the aviation industry had years to upgrade any equipment that might be affected.

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