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“I Have 5G on My Phone, Why Can’t I Get 5G Home Internet?” Answer: Because You Can’t. We’re Not Addressing the Digital Divide, Or Any Divide.

By Patricia Burke of Safe Tech International, Image courtesy Floris Freshman

(Disclaimer, the author is not a telecom expert or engineer, but reflecting on issues with 5G home internet to the best of her ability and declares no conflict of interest).

In the recent article “When You Are A Hammer, Everything Looks Like A Nail. To The Wireless Industry, Everything About You is a Nail” we referred to the fact that consumers have been socialized to equate “a tin foil hat” with a “dunce cap,” instead of “putting on our thinking caps” as we did in kindergarten.

Many critical thinkers are recognizing that they were duped into accepting the derogatory, ridiculing “tin-foil hat” projection that equates concern about 5G and wireless technologies with a dunce cap (not to mention, arsonist.)

In confronting their own mistaken beliefs and/or unconscious arrogance, critical thinkers are also recognizing their gullibility concerning claims that wireless connectivity will fix all of society’s ails, for everyone.

There is room for many more in the lifeboat.

If We’re Keeping Track of Lives Lost vs. Lives Saved: Motor Vehicle Fatalities and Fires Count

The article challenged the claim that recent storm-related deaths were caused by lack of broadband and/or cellular phone service and lack of notification, when landline phone service had not been maintained.

The “hammer article” also looked at the fact that “distracted driving is one of the leading causes of motor vehicle accidents. Traffic accidents are on the rise due to distracted driving, largely influenced by increased smartphone use. The majority of distracted driving incidents are caused by cell phone use.” – SOURCE

Then there is the cell tower fire issue.

The problem is not that 5G opponents torched telecom infrastructure during the pandemic – a charge that has not been substantiated.

Fire and Utility Consultant Susan Foster speculates that after the lockdown, existing towers were called upon to operate at or close to maximum capacity on a regular basis because everyone was telecommuting and tele-learning. This demand of the existing cell towers
challenged internal components that may or may not have been maintained regularly. If corrosion had damaged some of the internal parts and towers were operating at maximum capacity, breakage may have occurred in critical components, thus starting electrical fires within the cell towers. Foster believes the telecommunications industry “spun” the narrative to their favor by accusing 5G conspiracy theorists of initiating the fires.

“If you will note in some of the pictures depicting cell tower fires after this accusation of arson was leveled at 5G conspiracy theorists, many of those towers had fires that started two-thirds of the way up the cell tower,” explains Foster.

“If you were to see the inside of a cell tower, you would see that corresponds to the location where the electrical source connects with the antenna. I believe these were electrical fires that started due to poor maintenance, not arson at the hands of so-called conspiracy theorists. It is remarkably hard to set a steel cell tower on fire. On the other hand, electrical fires that breach the PVC surrounding internal wiring can reach 4000° in less than a second.”

Foster believes telecom was shifting the blame that they owned, and media outlets with investments in 5G were happy to go along with the narrative whether they knew the narrative was being “spun” or not.

As she explained in her 2022 testimony before the LA County Board of Supervisors, telecom equipment has the potential to cause fires, and is indeed causing both fires and fatalities.

FiberFirstLA summarized, (as noted in Susan Foster’s “Protecting LA County’s Future” white paper) “The fire risk of telecommunications equipment has left $6 billion worth of scorched earth over Southern California in the last 15 years alone. When the rains follow fires, mudslides are inevitable.”

Wireless Carriers and 5G Home Internet Coverage, or Lack Of

Just because a phone has 5G bars, this does not translate to home internet capacity.

Consumers do not recognize that the energy demands for texting and cellphone calls are far less than for video and internet use, and do not question their digital footprint.

A seemingly innocuous Feb. 4 industry-friendly article by CNET, “If I Have 5G on My Phone at Home, Why Can’t I Get 5G Home Internet? Those glorious 5G bars appear on your mobile device, but the 5G home internet rollout is still a work in progress” by Trey Paul raises alarming red flags about wireless and 5G coverage for critical thinkers.

Human Rights: Just Because You Are on the Map Does Not Mean You Can Get Service

CNET reports, “It’s been a few years since 5G started rolling out, but I must confess, as we move into 2023, sometimes it still baffles me. One of the questions I’m often asked is, “My provider says I can’t get its 5G home internet service — even though when I’m at home, I can get 5G on my phone. Why not?”

It’s not just T-Mobile. The same applies to Verizon, too. Its 5G home internet product is also not categorically available at all addresses covered by the company’s own 5G coverage map. Even if you’ve got Verizon’s Ultra Wideband service in your neighborhood, it’s not a sure thing that you’ll be able to sign up for Verizon 5G Home Internet.

Yes. T-Mobile and Verizon use cellular airwaves to offer dedicated 5G home internet plans. [ ] If T-Mobile and Verizon are serious about home internet, why isn’t it as widely available as their overall 5G coverage?  [ ]

A Verizon spokesperson told me via email that it designed its network with its mobile customers in mind. “We continue to allocate spectrum to ensure our mobile customers have the reliability they’ve come to expect from Verizon,” they said. “As we deploy more spectrum — in excess of what our models show we need for the highest reliability for our mobile customers — we are able to offer 5G Home service as well.”

5G allows for a greater connection density — approximately 1 million devices per square kilometer — than previous generations of cellular connectivity. Is that a lot? Yes, it’s about 100 times better than 4G, but it’s not limitless. Because a home internet product puts a heavy capacity usage on a mobile network, Moore believes T-Mobile has also been judicious about how it’s selling home internet.

“It’s not only the number of households that we believe could get [T-Mobile Home Internet],” she said, “but how many within a given sector we could say yes to.”

When I reached out to T-Mobile for further insight, a spokesperson corroborated that mindset. “There are still many households that do not qualify for Home Internet yet, even though they may get 5G on their mobile device — and that’s intentional,” they told me via email.

“Our fixed wireless Home Internet runs on the extra capacity on our wireless network. In some areas, we have extra capacity on the network, but in others, we don’t. So, we allocate access to Home Internet on a sector-by-sector, home-by-home basis.”

In other words, it’s entirely possible that I could get 5G cellular service in my home, and my next-door neighbor might even have T-Mobile Home Internet. However, my address still might not be serviceable for that home internet product due to the capacity limits for my area’s cellular coverage.”

Equal rights proponents and politicians promoting 5G and enabling installation of telecommunications infrastructure under the banner of ‘accessibility’ and ‘environmental justice’ and “addressing the digital divide” beware – We are barking up the wrong tree.

Like the red-lining employed by mortgage brokers in previous generations, it appears that 5G internet providers are already in the business of deciding who is eligible for 5G home internet.

(The term “redlining” originates with actual red lines on maps that identified predominantly-Black neighborhoods as “hazardous.” Starting in the 1930s, the government-sponsored Home Owners’ Loan Corporation and the Federal Home Loan Bank Board used these maps to deny lending and investment services to Black Americans )- Source

What maps are in use to determine who is eligible for 5G home internet?

It Gets Worse: As Noted by Worcester Activist Pam Steinberg, “Radiation without Representation is Tyranny

The CNET article notes “A Verizon spokesperson told me via email [ ] “As we deploy more spectrum — in excess of what our models show we need for the highest reliability for our mobile customers — we are able to offer 5G Home service as well.”

5G allows for a greater connection density — approximately 1 million devices per square kilometer — than previous generations of cellular connectivity. Is that a lot? Yes, it’s about 100 times better than 4G, but it’s not limitless. Because a home internet product puts a heavy capacity usage on a mobile network, Moore believes T-Mobile has also been judicious about how it’s selling home internet.

If I Have 5G on My Phone at Home, Why Can’t I Get 5G Home Internet? – CNET

 Let’s unpack a few issues here.

Who Gets Coverage?

If carriers need to be “judicious about how they are selling home internet” with 5G, we have a serious human rights/equal access issue.  Like the big tech millionaires vying over real estate in space, we can forget any implication that 5G is an equalizer or humanitarian endeavor, and that we are addressing the digital divide, (which was created by government agencies and telecom in the first place.)


In noting the inequities inherent in telecom plans for 5G Home Internet services, I am not implying that the inequalities need to be addressed. And, the perception of scarcity is often used as a marketing ploy.

The point is that the public and decision makers have been duped. The point is that 5G is not a social justice initiative, despite claims to the contrary, for example, here.

(There are countless reasons why the entire 5G/wireless paradigm needs further scrutiny.)

Who Gets Exposed to More Radiation via Increased Spectrum?

In order to ‘offer’ 5G coverage to those chosen households in a geographic area, an entire community is being irradiated with what many independent researchers recognize as a ubiquitous environmental toxin.  

The CNET article notes that T-Mobile proudly announced it had reached 1 million customers just a year after the product’s nationwide launch. As we move into 2023, T-Mobile Home Internet has over 2 million customers and is available to over 40 million households. Per T-Mobile, a third of those homes are in rural communities and small towns.

If T-Mobile internet is available to 40 million households and only 2 million have subscribed, 38 million non-benefitting households are apparently being exposed to the increased spectrum, radiofrequency, energy consumption, land and water use, and carbon footprint.

How many of these households, neighborhoods, and communities are unaware, uniformed, and non-consenting?

Where is the Increased Spectrum Coming From?

The CNET article states, “A Verizon spokesperson reported explained “As we deploy more spectrum — in excess of what our models show we need for the highest reliability for our mobile customers — we are able to offer 5G Home service as well.”

How is the “nation-wide 5G coverage” shown on industry maps being implemented? Where is the trail of documentation in every community authorizing Verizon to deploy more spectrum than is needed to provide cellular service?

Are towers and antennas continuing to operate at the same parameters that they did when they were authorized, or have they been ‘upgraded’?  

Who is making certain that the increased juxtaposition of exposures from multiple sources is not in excess of FCC limits? Who is guaranteeing that FCC limits are still relevant for chronic, cumulative, juxtaposed exposures? Who investigates reports of harm?

What Frequencies are Telecoms Using?

The CNET article notes, “Yes. T-Mobile and Verizon use cellular airwaves to offer dedicated 5G home internet plans.”

What exactly is a “cellular airwave?”

Is this a term that sounds better than “microwave radiation,” or “5G millimeter waves” that require increased densification of small cells and antennas?

Sciencing.com explains, “Cellular phone signals are transmitted on two bands, one between 800 to 900 megahertz and the other between 1.8 gigahertz to 1.95 GHz. Signals from a cellular phone transmit to a base-station, which relays it to the next station or other receivers on its network. Radio signals between a cellular phone and the network fluctuate in strength depending on the business of the network.”

Where is the biologically based premarket safety testing for the frequencies?

Post Pandemic: Increased, Unconscious Wireless Use

Yes, zoom calls consume less energy than driving.

But analysis by Gerry McGovern, author of World Wide Waste, supports observations by fire expert Susan Foster that the pandemic placed increased demands on telecom infrastructure.

The hidden pollution cost of online meetings – Gerry McGovern

The covid pandemic ushered in a new set of behaviors including zoom conference calls and streaming when the public was denied access to a wide range of alternative activities.

The demand for internet access became equated with the demand for wireless and 5G.

In hindsight, we can back away from unexamined and destructive behaviors adopted during the emergency. As Swami Beyondananda states, “we can emerge-and-see.”

For example, in The hidden pollution cost of online meetings Gerry McGovern considers “digital” impacts.

World Wide Waste – Gerry McGovern Note: whether or not one subscribes to narratives about climate or carbon, it is possible to evaluate whether or not consumption patterns are increasing.

“Since 1970, humans have changed from being consumers of the Earth to being devourers of the Earth.”

This includes the wireless footprint, including the infrastructure.

“When it comes to information and data, we have been sold the lie that it’s all in the Cloud, that it’s ethereal and immaterial. Digital is physical. Storing the current amount of data we have requires about 70 million servers. Each server caused between one and two tons of CO2 to manufacture, before we even consider the massive quantities of energy to run them, and the even more massive quantities of water to cool them.”- Gerry McGovern

It’s not just the information and data, it’s the infrastructure being installed and activated by an industry that will pick and choose who has increased access, while irradiating everyone, that bases its health and safety claims on inanimate models and tobacco science.

As noted by the Environmental Health Trust, “The whole aim of the new 5G network is to allow for more devices to be used by the consumer at faster rates than ever before, because of this goal there will certainly be an increase in energy usage globally.” “While the idea of more space for devices to be used is great for consumers, this will lead to a spike in energy usage for two reasons – the technology itself is energy demanding and will increase demand for more electronic devices. The ability for more devices to be used on the same network creates more incentive for consumers to buy electronics and use them more often. This will have a harmful impact on the environment through increased energy use” –“What Will 5G Mean for the Environment?”  by Claire Curran

Energy Consumption of 5G, Wireless Systems and the Digital Ecosystem – Environmental Health Trust (ehtrust.org)

“Videoconferencing (rather than just plain old talking without video) increases CO2 emissions, water use, and energy outputs.”

We haven’t even touched on health and environmental harm.

How much more ‘data’ do we need to realize that wired is a better way?

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