• What comes after 5G networks?

  • Is an IPO on the horizon for Starlink?

  • “You saved my portfolio… ”

Dear Reader,

Welcome to our weekly mailbag edition of The Bleeding Edge. All week, you submitted your questions about the biggest trends in technology.

Today, I’ll do my best to answer them.

If you have a question you’d like answered next week, be sure you submit it right here.

It’s Friday, and whenever I can, I try to wrap up the week on a positive note. I recognize that many of the topics I’ve been covering in The Bleeding Edge can be heavy and, for some, uncomfortable.

The culture of calling something “misinformation” if it doesn’t conform to someone’s personal views has no place in The Bleeding Edge. I’m an executive, an investor, a father, and, of course, an analyst working on behalf of my subscribers.

I work tirelessly to bring information and insights to my readers that I would like to have if our roles were reversed.

I make an extra effort to bring you information that isn’t parroted by the mainstream media. If I’ve learned anything over the last few years, it’s that objective journalism is very hard to find these days.

I am not a journalist, and I am most certainly not a reporter. As an analyst, I always dig in to check the source of any and all information before I ever write about a topic. It is very hard work, and it’s very time consuming. But it is worth it.

So why do we have reason to be optimistic today?

Given that the U.K. has already approved the Pfizer vaccine – and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is days away from approving not one, but two vaccines for use in the U.S. – the dynamics of the COVID-19 pandemic are going to shift very rapidly.

The current plan is to have 100 million people in the U.S. vaccinated by the end of February. Of course, that presumes 100 million people want the vaccine.

But if there are enough people, I’m confident that manufacturing and distribution will be able to make those shots available.

And what does that mean, practically? It means that we are less than two months away from this pandemic being over.

In the U.S., 100 million doses will be more than enough to cover the “at risk” parts of society. It’s enough to cover anyone who is 65 years or older with underlying conditions.

It can cover every health care worker. And it can be given to anyone with an autoimmune disease, hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and basically everyone who is morbidly obese.

The rest of society will be fine as COVID-19 is no riskier than influenza, and it’s typically less so. There will be no logical reason for restrictions of any kind as we enter March 2021 based on the vaccination plans that have been put in place.

It doesn’t mean that politicians and policy makers won’t try to place restrictions on us, or that others won’t try to exert control over the population. But it does mean that those efforts will be meaningless and that the real risk has come and gone.

What a remarkable accomplishment from March of this year through February next year. That’s just twelve months from start to finish!

My sincere hope is that we can refocus our newfound “super powers” to tackle even greater challenges like curing cancer, producing limitless clean energy, and bringing the next one billion people out of poverty… all through the use of technology.

It’s very clear now that we can innovate and deliver results much faster than we thought we could.

2021 is going to be one heck of a year.

Our wireless networks will continue to improve…

Let’s begin with a question looking ahead at what comes after our 5G networks:

Jeff, the new generation in wireless is 5G. There seems to be a new wireless generation every decade or so, but 5G is called revolutionary rather than evolutionary.

I have read where you have written that 5G is not a technology; it is a standard. The standard is something like this: incredible speed, virtually no latency, everywhere all the time. That sounds like the ultimate, like it never could be improved upon.

Do you foresee a 6G? Within another decade or later than that? How will it be better? Faster?

 – Michael P.

Hey, Michael. Thanks for writing in. You’ve got a great handle on the new 5G wireless networks and their benefits.

As a recap for new readers, about once every 10 years, the world goes through a major wireless infrastructure build-out.

In the 1990s, it was second-generation (2G) technology. In the 2000s, it was third-generation (3G) technology. And in the 2010s, it has been fourth-generation (4G) wireless technology. Now wireless networks are transitioning again to fifth-generation (5G) wireless technology.

But 5G is more than just another so-so wireless network upgrade. 5G speeds will be as much as 100 times faster than the 4G speeds many people around the country use today. And there will effectively be no latency (delay) over 5G networks. Latency will drop by 99% from more than 100 milliseconds down to a mere millisecond.

And with these improvements, 5G will enable new technologies like self-driving cars, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR), remote surgery, and holographic telepresence. I’m excited to see the new applications people develop with 5G.

So with these kinds of radical improvements, will we need to switch to 6G at some point? It’s a logical question.

And my answer is yes. There will be a 6G, and it will be even more advanced than 5G. And we might be surprised to know that the industry has already begun to develop it.

Back in March 2019, industry experts met at the first major 6G gathering in Finland. That led to the launch of the 6Genesis Flagship Program (6GFP). It’s an eight-year, $230 million project to develop, implement, and test the key technologies needed for 6G.

But why are industry experts already talking about 6G with 5G just now gaining steam?

The answer is that wireless technologies are about a decade in the making. It’s a complex development process that requires an incredible amount of collaboration in the industry.

To develop a next-generation wireless standard typically requires more than 100 companies working together and contributing their time, ideas, and, ultimately, their intellectual property toward a unified wireless technology standard.

As for what it will look like, 6G will require small cell architecture like 5G, except it will need even more cell towers and base stations. Just as 5G will require at least five times more cell stations than 4G, 6G will require more than 5G and operate at even higher frequencies.

That’s just what’s needed to get the deep network penetration necessary to deliver higher speeds and larger bandwidth. We can expect 6G speeds to be about 10 times faster than 5G. That puts us around an average of 10 gigabits per second (Gbps).

That might seem unnecessarily fast to some. And for how we use today’s wireless networks, it is. But just like we’re seeing with 5G, with more bandwidth and higher speeds come new applications that use the improved network capabilities.

And we can expect artificial intelligence (AI) to be deeply sown into 6G networks. AI will help manage what will be incredibly complex wireless networks. And it will enable incredible services even above what 5G will bring.

Of course, you won’t hear me talk about 6G much in the next few years. That’s because there are no actional investment opportunities in 6G at the moment. But if you stick with me, I fully expect to be recommending the most exciting 6G companies around 2028…

We are laser-focused on 5G right now. The 5G boom is in the sweet spot as we wrap up 2020. And I’m on record saying that 5G will be one of the most profitable investment trends of the decade. We’re on the cusp of exponential growth right now.

And if any readers have not yet positioned themselves to profit from 5G, go right here to see my recent presentation and discover some of the best ways to invest in this trend. I don’t want any of my readers to miss out.

My prediction for Starlink…

Next, a reader wants to know more about an anticipated initial public offering (IPO):

Thank you for taking my question. I’m a proud member of The Near Future Report. My question is, what are the chances that SpaceX/Starlink will have an IPO this year? Thank you for your time. A membership is well worth having.

 – Blue S.

Hi there, Blue. Thank you for being a subscriber and for your kind words. You’ve asked a question that’s been on my mind recently, too…

Readers are no doubt familiar with Elon Musk’s privately owned space exploration company SpaceX. I’ve written about it numerous times in The Bleeding Edge, especially its recent successful Crew Dragon mission to the International Space Station.

As for a SpaceX IPO, I suspect that it won’t happen in the near future. The company has incredible traction right now with one successful mission after the other.

SpaceX will have no problem raising additional capital while private. If I had to guess, I believe that Musk will wait until SpaceX has had its first successful mission to the Moon and the first unmanned mission to Mars before an IPO.

However, there is a much greater possibility of an IPO when we look at Starlink, SpaceX’s satellite constellation.

In February this year, SpaceX CEO Gwynne Shotwell told a group of investors that Starlink is likely to spin off and go public. Then, this past September, Musk teased the idea again on Twitter when he wrote, “We will probably IPO Starlink, but only several years in the future when revenue growth is smooth & predictable.”

So there’s no set timeline, but I predict this will likely happen in the next two or three years.

As we’ve shared in these pages, Starlink is creating a satellite network around the Earth that can provide communications access to anywhere on the planet. The beta network just went live this November.

And I believe Starlink will eventually become a backhaul network for space. It will allow satellites to communicate with base stations on Earth 24 hours a day.

This is an ambitious project. Starlink intends to blanket the Earth with at least 12,000 satellites… and even as many as 42,000.

The current Starlink network is already the largest around Earth with over 900 satellites in operation. And assuming SpaceX makes it to its minimum target of 12,000 satellites, it will have achieved something that incumbents have dreamed about for decades.

At that scale, Musk estimates that Starlink could bring in $30 billion in revenue every year. And to me, that signals why he would want to spin out Starlink into its own company…

After all, SpaceX is in the business of disrupting the aerospace industry with bleeding-edge technology to launch payloads into orbit, to the Moon, and eventually to Mars. A company like Starlink would hire SpaceX to launch its satellites into orbit.

So once the satellite constellation is sufficient to build out its subscriber base and generate consistent revenues, I believe Musk wants to raise additional capital or debt to help further fund Starlink’s build-out. Musk is cleverly providing the seed capital to a company that will eventually pay SpaceX for launch services.

And believe it or not, the clear prospect of a Starlink IPO in the near future actually helps SpaceX raise additional funds.

After all, existing shareholders in SpaceX will automatically receive shares in Starlink at the time of the spinout. The profits that they make on the Starlink IPO will almost certainly be far greater than the value of their original investment in SpaceX.

And for us as investors, a publicly traded Starlink could be a very attractive investment target. I’ll be sure to keep my readers up to date as this story progresses…

Phase 2 is in motion…

Let’s conclude with a question about a project we’ve got in the works:

Great call. Bought on your strong buy and sold at 134. Quick $5,000 profit. Up $15,000 on the other four strong buy picks I’m still holding. Love your advice. You’re a great writer, easy to understand.

Bought your Near Future Report when the market fell in March, and I’m up $205,000 since. You saved my portfolio. I bought your Exponential Tech Investor a month ago, and I’m already up $15k, which is very exciting.

Could you give an update on [your Phase Two company]? It looks great but has been dropping since its high of $158. I have 630 shares, so I’m not sure what to do.

Thanks so much for all your expert advice. How do I get your new IPO subscription?

 – Bill K.

Hi, Bill, and thanks for being a subscriber. It’s great to hear from subscribers who’ve been able to use my research to their advantage. Welcome aboard!

I can’t tell you how excited I am about our prospects in 2021. I’ll be writing more about that in the coming weeks, but the confluence of technological developments and record levels of investment are events that I’ve never seen in my 35 years as an investor.

As for your first question, I’ve removed the specific ticker out of respect for our paid subscribers. But let me reassure you that – especially with the arrival of Apple’s 5G-enabled iPhone 12 – we’re now firmly in Phase 2 of the 5G rollout.

As a reminder, Phase 2 is the devices phase, when consumers begin to upgrade their wireless devices (smartphones, tablets, home routers, etc.) en masse to be able to take advantage of the higher speeds and lower latency of 5G.

3G- and 4G-enabled devices simply cannot access 5G networks, which means there will be a huge demand for 5G-enabled devices as people realize just how revolutionary this technology is. In fact, this will be the largest wireless technology refresh cycle in history, especially with regard to smartphones.

I’ll have a full update on the specific stock you mentioned in the portfolio updates in our next Near Future Report issue coming out on Monday, December 7. So please make sure to tune in for that.

And if any readers would like to join us just in time for this month’s issue, you can go right here to find out how to become a subscriber.

As for your second question, I’ve mentioned a few times recently that I’ve got a special project in the works… a new way for readers to get in on “pre-IPO” shares without having to be an accredited investor.

And I’m happy to say that I’ve made excellent progress, and I’ll soon be able to reveal all of the details. In fact, I’ll have some very exciting news coming out about this opportunity in the coming weeks.

We’re going to kick off the year with some excitement. So please keep an eye out for that announcement…

That’s all we have time for this week. If you have a question for a future mailbag, you can send it to me right here.

Have a good weekend.


Jeff Brown
Editor, The Bleeding Edge

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