AT&T Communications and Verizon Wireless have agreed to suspend the commencement of their planned C-band 5G deployments from 5 January until 19 January in order to appease the aviation industry. The two companies had previously pushed back their initial rollout start date from 5 December 2021 to 5 January 2022. The two companies had found themselves under pressure from Pete Buttigieg, the Secretary of Transportation.
A statement issued by AT&T confirmed: ‘At Secretary Buttigieg’s request, we have voluntarily agreed to one additional two-week delay of our deployment of C-band 5G services. We also remain committed to the six-month protection zone mitigations we outlined in our letter. We know aviation safety and 5G can co-exist and we are confident further collaboration and technical assessment will allay any issues.’
According to CNN, the two cellcos had offered to implement restrictions on their 5G antennas similar to those currently used near French airports for a period of six months, but this measure was not deemed sufficient.