China wants to create a new internet - and you may like what the country has in mind. Its design promises a network fast enough to show you as a live hologram in a video chat, secure enough to block data deluge attacks that smash sites, flexible enough to easily fit Elon Musk Starlink broadband satellite connection and responds enough to allow you to drive car from distance.
But there is a big problem with this proposal, called New IP, promoted by Huawei and China's three most powerful state-owned telecommunications companies. It is transported in political and technological terms which means the chances success are low.
The New IP will shift control of the internet, both its development and its operation, to countries and the central telecommunications powers often managed by governments. It will facilitate the repression of dissidents. New IP technology could also hurt her privacy and his freedom speech. And the New IP project would have a hard time trying out new ideas network and add new network infrastructure without securing government permission, project critics say.
"What problem do the Chinese think they will solve? The problem is that they do not have control. "They want to be in control of the internet," said James Lewis, director of the Technology Policy Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. "What drives it is politics, not technology."
The future of one of the most important technologies that humans have ever invented is at stake. The internet has proven to be highly adaptable, evolving from an academic research project funded by the government of USA in a global institution of communication, commerce and entertainment. The New IP project begins ahead of the World Telecommunication Standards Conference (WTSA-20) in November, where allies hope to consolidate its status.
China can influence the internet, even without the New IP, by spreading the current one technology and its practices. Some observers, including the former CEO of Google, Eric Schmidt, fear a "splinternet", where the current global network will be fragmented into incompatible national networks
In the United States, the Trump administration has not commented on the New IP plan but is pushing hard to undermine Chinese economic influence and offset China's attempt to lead the way in technology such as mobile networks. 5G and to Artificial Intelligence. Speaking Thursday, Attorney General William Barr said China plans to "dominate the world's digital infrastructure."