SALT LAKE CITY (KUTV) — Salt Lake City is now at the center of helping develop one of the world's newest technologies. Wednesday, the Federal Communications Commission announced Salt Lake as one of two test beds to develop 5G.
Salt Lake and New York City are the only two cities in the country the FCC has designated innovation zones to test 5G.
“I think it's going to be pretty cool, it's going to make some big changes in the world,” said Dan Young, a technology expert and owner of PC Laptops.
Salt Lake's innovation zone is about four square miles over three connected areas, including the University of Utah and part of downtown.
Telecom companies will test the technology here and study the data collected to tweak 5G.
“Normally, you could have like 100,000 within one kilometer, right. Now, with 5G, you can have a million users within that same kilometer,” Young said.
5G will be used by governments, businesses and individuals.
In Utah, “there are more computers per household and technology items than almost any other state in all of the country, so what a perfect test place for this new technology,” Young said.
A team at the University of Utah is running the project. They installed towered nodes on buildings all over the testing area that will eventually connect everything from toothbrushes to smart cars.
“But the cool thing here in Utah is we'll be able to test a lot of that early and see what kind of cool things we can create with it,” Young said.
Experts are not entirely sure when 5G will be rolled out to the masses, but the innovation zone starts Wednesday and will be in place for five years.
5G stands for Fifth Generation. First Generation gave us the technology to text, Second Generation introduced the web on phones, 3G allowed us to go on social media, and 4G introduced the ability to stream.