What Is AT&T Internet Air and Can It Negatively Impact Your Health?

Last Updated on December 11, 2023

Key Takeaways

  1. What is AT&T Internet Air? We’re shedding light on the newest form of wireless Internet.
  2. EMF Hazards: AT&T’s Internet Air introduces EMF radiation concerns due to its wireless infrastructure and use of higher-frequency millimeter-wave technology.
  3. Health Precautions: To mitigate potential risks, individuals should maintain a safe distance from Internet Air transmitters, consider EMF shielding, and stay informed about the latest research on EMF exposure and health effects.
  4. Balancing Act: While Internet Air offers expanded coverage and high-speed internet access, its potential health risks must be weighed carefully, particularly in underserved communities where affordable access is essential.

In our rapidly evolving digital age, technological advancements continue to transform the way we live, work, and connect. The latest of these are wireless home internet from telecom providers like Verizon, T-Mobile, and AT&T, which can replace cable services running directly to your home and provide an upgrade to home internet service. 

AT&T’s Internet Air, a wireless broadband technology, is the latest innovation that promises to revolutionize internet access.

However, this technology, while offering high-speed connectivity, also raises serious concerns about electromagnetic fields (EMF) and potential health risks. In this blog, we will explore the key aspects of AT&T’s new 5G home internet service, delve into the EMF concerns associated with it, and discuss the potential health implications, taking a cautious stance on its safety. 

What is Internet Air? The Newest Form of Wireless Internet

Internet Air is a new kind of wireless broadband service designed to provide high-speed internet access to homes and businesses. It is a unique 5G home internet option, different from Verizon and T-Mobile wireless services. 

It’s like a mix between traditional cable television services and Wi-Fi, in that it can give you everything cable does, but wirelessly on a 5G network.

While Wi-Fi is wireless internet to the consumer, the router still needs to be wired to an Ethernet cable that is run to the house. Internet Air would send wireless internet to your home directly from a telecom tower! Instead of a Wi-Fi router, it uses a futuristic-looking All-Fi Hub to connect.

Credit: AT&T
AT&T’s All-Fi Hub allows you to connect to its Internet Air fixed wireless 5G home internet.

Internet Air relies on a fixed wireless infrastructure that utilizes millimeter-wave spectrum (5G frequencies!) to transmit data over the airwaves, eliminating the need for physical cables or fiber-optic connections. It is slowly being rolled out in different cities across America.

The Promise of Internet Air

  • Expanded coverage: Internet Air has the potential to bring internet coverage to areas where traditional broadband infrastructure is challenging to deploy, especially where the aging copper wireline network won’t be replaced by fiber optics. As AT&T is working to address the digital divide, Internet Air has the potential to offer economic opportunities, education, and telemedicine to underserved communities – such as the Native Americans, who are among the least connected to high-speed internet. The coverage and capacity to deliver internet to an expanded footprint of communities is a promising component to this new technology. 
  • Reduced Installation Time: Unlike wired internet services that require extensive installation, Internet Air can be set up relatively quickly, reducing the time and effort needed to connect homes and businesses, with self-setup able to complete in minutes. It uses just one single internet gateway, known as an All-Fi Hub.  
  • Competitive Pricing: AT&T aims to offer competitive pricing for Internet Air, making it an attractive option for consumers seeking an affordable high-speed internet alternative with unlimited data usage. 

EMF Concerns with Internet Air

While AT&T’s Internet Air offers exciting possibilities for improving internet access, it also raises legitimate concerns related to EMF radiation.

EMF is a form of non-ionizing radiation emitted by wireless devices and networks, including cell phones, cell towers, Wi-Fi routers, and Internet Air transmitters.

Already, there are significant health concerns with traditional Wi-Fi, which uses sub millimeter waves at 2-6 GHz frequencies. Internet Air will use higher frequencies just as close to your living space, and cannot be turned off or unplugged. Here are some key EMF concerns associated with Internet Air:

  1. Radiation exposure: The millimeter-wave technology used in Internet Air operates at higher frequencies, leading to denser EMF radiation. The proximity of these transmitters to homes and businesses could potentially increase long-term exposure to EMF for residents and workers.
  2. Health implications: Research on the health effects of EMF exposure have raised significant concerns regarding the potential link between prolonged EMF exposure and a range of serious health issues, including cancer, neurological disorders, and infertility. Although definitive evidence is still emerging, the mounting body of research underscores the critical importance of taking these potential risks into serious consideration.
  3. Lack of long-term data: One of the significant challenges in assessing the health impacts of Internet Air is the lack of long-term data. As this technology is relatively new, there is limited research available on its potential health effects. Long-term studies are essential to evaluate the safety of prolonged exposure to millimeter-wave EMF. However, the preliminary research is cause for concern.

Internet Air vs. Traditional Wi-Fi: A Cautionary Review

AT&T’s Internet Air represents a significant departure from traditional internet options. Here, we will explore the key differences between Internet Air and traditional Wi-Fi, emphasizing the potential hazards of EMF radiation:

DefenderShield Fixed Wireless Inforgraphic

Wireless vs. Wired Infrastructure

AT&T Internet Air service operates on a wireless infrastructure, transmitting internet data through the airwaves. It relies on fixed wireless transmitters strategically placed in the coverage area to establish connections with user devices.

Most homes and businesses rely on an internet service provider (ISP) modem or router that is wired to the property. Data is then wirelessly broadcasted from the router within the premises using a local area network (LAN).

  • Key Concern: Internet Air’s wireless infrastructure exposes users to higher levels of EMF radiation compared to traditional wired connections.

Spectrum and Frequency

This new technology employs millimeter-wave spectrum, operating at higher frequencies (typically 30 GHz to 300 GHz). These high frequencies enable faster data transmission and shorter signal ranges.

Traditional Wi-Fi networks typically operate in the 2.4 GHz and 5 or 6 GHz bands. These lower frequencies offer longer signal ranges but can be prone to interference and congestion, leading to slower speeds in densely populated areas.

  • Key Concern: Internet Air’s use of higher frequencies results in denser EMF radiation, potentially posing greater health risks.

Coverage and Deployment

Internet Air is well-suited for extending broadband coverage to underserved areas. It requires the installation of fixed transmitters within the coverage zone, which can be done relatively quickly compared to laying traditional cables.

Traditional Wi-Fi networks are typically confined to homes, businesses, or public spaces and rely on a wired connection to the broader internet infrastructure. Currently, Internet Air is available in select regions, but the offering is continuing to expand. 

  • Key Concern: While Internet Air extends coverage, it also increases the density of EMF radiation in areas previously underserved, potentially affecting a larger population.

Speed and Reliability

With high-speed internet access, and the potential for gigabit-level upload speed of up to 140mbps, its reliance on millimeter-wave technology enables low latency and consistent performance, leading to great in-home connectivity.

Traditional Wi-Fi performance can vary depending on factors like the distance from the router, interference from other devices, and the number of connected users. It may not always deliver consistent high-speed performance.

  • Key Concern: While Internet Air provides faster speeds, the potential health risks associated with EMF radiation should be carefully weighed against these benefits.

Accessibility and Affordability

AT&T aims to provide competitive pricing for Internet Air, making it accessible to a broader range of users. Traditional Wi-Fi services often require a subscription with an ISP and the fiber optic infrastructure, and the cost can vary depending on location and service plan.

In remote areas, access may be limited or more expensive. It is even more affordable if you are already an AT&T customer. 

  • Key Concern: Internet Air’s affordable service should not overshadow the potential health risks, especially in underserved communities that may be more vulnerable. 

Health Concerns and Precautions

Given the concerns surrounding EMF radiation from Internet Air and similar technologies, it’s vital to take precautions to mitigate potential risks:

  • Distance Matters: Minimize exposure by maintaining a safe distance from Internet Air transmitters whenever possible. Ensure that these transmitters are not installed too close to living spaces or frequently occupied areas—especially not in the bedroom!
  • EMF Shielding: Consider using EMF shielding products and materials to reduce radiation exposure indoors. These materials can be applied to walls as wallpaper, windows, and doors to defend against EMF radiation. Clothing with shielding fabrics are another good option, and also blankets for when lounging on the couch or headed to bed. Check out our products which can help you stay safe and protected! 
  • Stay Informed: Keep up to date with the latest research on EMF exposure and health effects. Keep an eye on developments in the field and be open to adjusting your habits and precautions as new information becomes available.

Conclusion: Proceed with Caution

AT&T’s Internet Air may hold the promise of expanded internet access and improved connectivity. On the other hand, it also raises significant concerns about EMF radiation and potential health risks.

While the benefits of this technology are promising, it is crucial that users, communities, and policymakers proceed with caution.

As research on EMF exposure and health effects continues, we must prioritize safety and well-being while carefully harnessing the power of technological innovation.

Daniel T. DeBaun

Daniel T. DeBaun is an internationally recognized and influential expert in Electromagnetic Radiation (EMF) and shielding electronic emissions, with a particular focus on the effect of exposure from mobile devices such as laptops, tablets and cell phones. Daniel’s concern regarding the health impact of electronic radiation emissions grew from over 30 years of engineering experience in the telecommunications industry, where he held a variety of leadership and executive positions at Bell Labs, AT&T, SAIC and Telcordia. Daniel is co-author of recent bestseller, Radiation Nation: The Fallout of Modern Technology, a complete guide to EMF radiation safety and protection. Daniel is also a highly regarded industry consultant, speaker as well as frequent guest national radio and television programs discussing EMF health issues.