5G can bring new meaning to connectivity and learning

John Emra
April 16, 2021
Broadband Access and Affordability, Innovation and Technology

5G can bring new meaning to connectivity and learning

Last week, Sabrina Tucker-Barrett, CEO/President of Girls for Technology, wrote an opinion piece about closing the digital divide.

I encourage you to read the full op-ed here

We’re dedicated to doing our part to bring affordability, educational resources, and economic opportunity to the millions of Americans who don’t have broadband connectivity today. Education and training need to be fully accessible, and one way is through leveraging technology. Access to online tools, platforms and curriculum means students face fewer limitations on learning. The COVID-19 pandemic has taught us, what constitutes a classroom is wide-ranging, and in many cases, ubiquitous.

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How can high speed, reliable, low-latency wireless technology like 5G change the way we learn?

Artificial Intelligence (AI) guides and ultrahigh-definition video streaming will expand the concept of distance learning.

Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) can provide new avenues for training and hands-on learning experiences.


Imagine if…
– Recess could become in-the-field research by superimposing a digital understanding of physics on playground equipment.  
– High school students were one day controlling a robot inside an active volcano from thousands of miles away.  
– Graduate students across the world would be able to explore the rain forest together and virtually discuss their findings.

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Even though these opportunities are futuristic, consider more concrete benefits. As Sabrina Tucker-Barrett discusses in her op-ed, connectivity is important to:

With distance learning, as teachers and students alike try to recreate the classroom experience, a clear, reliable connection is necessary to notice subtleties like a teacher’s nuance, a student’s hesitation or the myriad of intangibles crucial to a quality education.
Flexible learning opportunities arise when a student can use a phone, tablet or laptop to access learning tools from virtually anywhere and with virtually anyone.
ENGAGE ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY / STEM LEARNING Students can access information faster and experience new technologies more readily, distance learning also requires quality connections and speed to run advanced, data-heavy programs and lessons including STEM learning.


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Connecticut educators know the impact is real. Here’s what they have to say:

“Lack of connection creates an educational paradox—if we want kids to learn how to use cutting-edge technology, they need to utilize cutting-edge technology,” says Tucker-Barrett.

“Advanced, reliable technology is a necessity in today’s competitive and global market, and continues to revolutionize how people learn, work, communicate, and live,” said Walter Luckett, General Manager of the ECHO Program at The Justice Education Center. “The pandemic has heightened the urgency and criticality of creating a superior technological infrastructure that allows young people to remain focused, engaged and connected in a way that supports their educational needs, requirements, and aspirations for their personal and professional development, growth, livelihood, and life.”

Upgrading wireless infrastructure will also make strides toward achieving equity and closing the digital divide, as new technologies help fill the educational gap in urban and rural areas.

AT&T is committed to working with state and local governments in order to enhance our network, the infrastructure and keep pace with growing data needs.

Additional resources and information can be found at:

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