The Debate

Not so fast? The pros and cons of 5G technology

THE DEBATE © France 24

What’s the problem with 5G? A little over a week before France is due to deliver licenses and as newly-elected left and Green Party mayors lead the call for a moratorium, France's President tells a French tech conference that he is a fan of next generation 5G. We listen to Emmanuel Macron's take a jab at the “Amish model”. But, putting Puritan sects and COVID conspiracies aside, are there real health or environmental risks linked to what has been billed as an acceleration to warp speed for wireless mobile networks?


After a confinement that highlighted the planet's growing digital inequality, do the benefits of 5G outweigh the costs? That question is particularly relevant when it comes to security: there is a global leader in 5G, and it has got the might of the Chinese state behind it. Can Huawei be trusted with our data any more than private US tech giants? Already the UK has decided to phase out Huawei from its network. And on the day the new European Commission President delivered her first State of the EU address, what side does the continent take in what is part of a bigger battle between superpowers?

Produced by Charles Wente, Juliette Laurain and Imen Mellaz. 

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