Real Security Demands a Fundamental Change to Software Updates

2019 Schuchart Headshot Cropped
S. Schuchart

Summary Bullets:

  • IT security issues are being exacerbated by unregulated auto-update mechanisms.
  • Systemic and fundamental change to a centralized, approval-based update system is necessary.

A simple rule of thumb for complex systems is that wherever simplicity is added, there is corresponding complexity added elsewhere. For instance, in early PC computing, only software updates were required when the latest version was bought.  Bug fixes sent to existing users were exceedingly rare, as they required physical media.  With the advent of the Internet, physical media was gradually shunted to the side as bandwidth increased.  Bug fixes were suddenly available to anyone who wanted to download and install them.  Then came auto updating.  Software began to reach out on its own to check to see if it were up to date and, if not, updated itself.  Bugs were eliminated and security enhanced.  In turn, this enabled rapid iteration software development and the so-called ‘fail fast’ mentality for startups and app developers. After all, if the app was flawed, a patch would simply be applied as fast as the developer could make it. Continue reading “Real Security Demands a Fundamental Change to Software Updates”

700MHz Spectrum Plays a Pivotal Role in Delivering 5G Coverage

S. Soh

Summary Bullets:

  • 700MHz spectrum is a strategic band for operators to achieve better coverage including indoor and rural areas.
  • Mobile operators around the world, particularly in China, are using 700MHz spectrum to accelerate coverage expansion.

The deployment of 5G is gathering momentum around the world.  The number of 5G subscriptions reached 414 million globally in 2020, and GlobalData expects the number to more than double in 2021.  China is leading in 5G adoption, with its number of subscriptions representing 76% of the global figure in 2020.  GlobalData expects this to be the case in 2021 as the world continues to learn about 5G through the lens of China.  Globally, many operators have been awarded mid-band spectrum, typically in the 3.5GHz range, to kick-start 5G deployment.  With additional spectrum including between 80 MHz and 100 MHz of net new spectrum, operators can deliver much faster data speeds with 5G as compared to 4G, to demonstrate the value of 5G to both consumer and business customers.  However, the propagation characteristics of 3.5GHz spectrum mean that the coverage range from the cell site is more limited than the low-band spectrum (i.e., sub-1GHz such as 700MHz).  This means mobile operators need to increase the number of cell sites to achieve the same coverage area that they would using the lower frequency band.  It is also more difficult to penetrate walls and ultimately affect the coverage indoors, which is a problem in urban areas when using the higher band. Continue reading “700MHz Spectrum Plays a Pivotal Role in Delivering 5G Coverage”