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5G networks

Coronavirus helps China pull ahead in the 5G race

The world's No. 2 economy to account for 60% of global 5G handsets in 2020

A 5G-enabled autonomous vehicle equipped with a camera films cherry blossoms inside the closed grounds of Wuhan University for a live-streaming event on March 17.   © Reuters

TAIPEI -- In February, as cities throughout Sichuan Province were locked down to combat the spread of the coronavirus, unmanned drones circled the skies, broadcasting pandemic prevention measures, spraying disinfectant, and even conducting thermal imaging checks on residents.

Some 1,800 km away in Beijing, 5G-powered drones dispatched face masks near the Beijing National Stadium and delivered hot meals to hospital patients to reduce human contact. In Wuhan, the original epicenter of the outbreak, hundreds of driverless vans continue to sanitize the streets.

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