The Federal Communications Commission has identified 51 U.S. mobile carriers that still have Huawei and ZTE 5G gear in their networks despite a government policy that bans that equipment from US service-provider networks.\n\n5G resources\n\nWhat is 5G? Fast wireless technology for enterprises and phones\nHow 5G frequency affects range and speed\nPrivate 5G can solve some problems that Wi-Fi can\u2019t\nPrivate 5G keeps Whirlpool driverless vehicles rolling\n5G can make for cost-effective private backhaul\nCBRS can bring private 5G to enterprises\n\n\nVerizon, CenturyLink (which plans to rebrand as Lumen), and Cincinnati Bell are among the most prominent names on the list, and most of the others are small regional providers\nThe FCC said that the cost of replacing the China-built equipment at all of the companies on the list could top $1.8 billion.\n\nMore than $1.6 billion of that would be eligible for reimbursement from the commission\u2019s Universal Service Fund under provisions of a 2019 law that bans the purchase of potentially suspect networking equipment. The fund is designed to defray the cost of providing communications services to low-income households and those in high-cost areas.\nUnder the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act, carriers must provide detailed plans for removing all banned equipment within a year of applying for reimbursement.\n\u201cBy identifying the presence of insecure equipment and services in our networks, we can now work to ensure that these networks\u2014especially those of small and rural carriers\u2014rely on infrastructure from trusted vendors,\u201d said FCC commissioner Ajit Pai in a statement.\nThe FCC\u2019s report on the matter doesn\u2019t really give the full story, however. The extent to which each company on the list is using prohibited equipment isn\u2019t clear, despite the 2019\u2019s apparent requirement of detailed progress updates from the companies involved.\nWhile the chances of prohibited networking equipment being used be telcos has a chance of affecting its enterprise customers, the risk is probably minimal, according to Joe Bonner, a senior analyst at Argus Research.\n\u201cI frankly don\u2019t think it\u2019s much of a worry, but again, you can\u2019t really tell,\u201d he said. \u201cEven if, say, Verizon had a lot of it, the idea that that would cause a security concern for an enterprise customer is a long shot.\u201d\nSimilarly, the nature of the replacement process for prohibited equipment \u2013 a \u201crip and replace,\u201d according to Bonner \u2013 poses a small but non-zero risk of service disruptions for enterprise customers.\n\u201cThat\u2019s not what they want to happen, but when you upgrade networks, unfortunately, sometimes Murphy\u2019s Law prevails,\u201d he said.\nThe effects of the Huawei and ZTE ban are still being felt throughout the US telecom ecosystem, causing a potential slowdown of 5G deployments, as other equipment makers move to fill the void.\nIt\u2019s too soon to tell which of the Nokias or Ericssons of the world has an edge, and despite loud proclamations by the carriers of nationwide 5G coverage, that particular wave of new deployments is still in its infancy.