ditor’s Note: RCR Wireless News goes all in for “Throwback Thursdays,” tapping into our archives to resuscitate the top headlines from the past. Fire up the time machine, put on the sepia-tinted shades, set the date for #TBT and enjoy the memories!
Deciphering the 600 MHz auction results
Aggressive bidding activity by T-Mobile US and Dish Network helped bolster each company’s respective spectrum positions, according to a post-auction report complied by Allnet Insights & Analytics. T-Mobile US, which spent nearly $8 billion during the auction proceedings in acquiring a claimed 45% of all 600 MHz spectrum sold, came out of the auction with an average of 41 megahertz of sub-1 GHz spectrum holdings. T-Mobile US entered the auction with a nationwide average of eight megahertz of low-band spectrum. The carrier has been very vocal in touting the benefits of its growing low-band spectrum assets, which also include 700 MHz licenses deployed in covering more than 250 million potential customers. T-Mobile US this week said it’s expecting this year to begin deploying some of its recently won licenses and have access to at least 10 megahertz of 600 MHz spectrum covering more than 1 million square miles. The carrier in total won 1,525 10-megahertz licenses covering 414 of the auction’s 428 partial economic areas. “Our team has a history of deploying network technologies at record-breaking pace – including the fastest recorded LTE deployment in U.S. history,” said T-Mobile US CTO Neville Ray, in a statement. “We’re ready to break records again on 600 MHz.” … Read more
SD-WAN hits an inflection point
The ongoing development and deployment of software platforms by telecommunication providers under the guise of software-defined networking, network functions virtualization and cloud technologies continues to roll across the market. However, much of the actual work remains in the hands and laboratories of larger players that have the resources to drive those efforts. One area that is seeing a more diverse set of players is the software-defined wide area network space, which is attracting deployments from telecom operators and service providers of various sizes as well as enterprises looking to take more control over their networking needs. IDC last year forecast the SD-WAN space to reach $6 billion in technology and service sales by 2020, with a compound annual growth rate of more than 90% over the next five years. Versa Networks late last year released results of a survey conducted by Dimensional Research that found network professionals at large-sized enterprises claimed maintaining security policies and practices, network devices and complexity due to cloud and mobile applications was the most difficult aspects of managing the WAN. The survey also noted 97% said they face multiple challenges to managing their WAN, with the three biggest being managing network and security devices at branch locations; mitigating information security risks at branch locations; and deploying new network and security solutions at branch locations. VeloCloud is one of the vendors that has seen recent traction from companies looking to deploy a SD-WAN platform. The company over the past several months has scored deployment deals with the likes of Windstream, AT&T and Sprint. … Read more
FCC seeks to streamline deployments by limiting local control
Securing sites for wireless infrastructure could become much easier if new rules proposed by the Federal Communications Commission take effect. In a notice of proposed rulemaking, the agency has listed several ways the federal government could force local and state governments to approve applications for new towers, small cells and distributed antenna systems, as well as for amendments to existing structures. A “shot clock” refers to a period of time during which a permitting authority must rule on an application. If the authority does not approve or deny the request before the end of the set time period, the request is deemed granted. Right now there are several shot clocks in effect. For modifications to existing towers and base station sites, the shot clock is 60 days, provided those modifications do not significantly change the physical structure. But if the modification involves the collocation of a new carrier on the site, the shot clock is 90 days, and for brand new sites it is 150 days. The FCC is seeking public comment on a proposal to shorten all the shot clocks to 60 days. The agency may also consider even shorter shot clocks for small cells and distributed antenna systems. … Read more
Huawei works on 5G validation
Chinese ICT vendor Huawei, in tests with various global service providers, is working to validate technologies seen as core to future 5G networks. Trials have focused on massive multiple input, multiple out, deployment in high band millimeter wave (mm wave) spectrum and end-to-end network slicing–the automated ability to create an application-specific connection between devices and cloud services. With Indonesian carrier Telkomsel, Huawei recently demonstrated massive MIMO on an FDD LTE network, and reported a 5x capacity increase compared to the same network with 2×2 MIMO. Telkomsel is looking to use massive MIMO to boost network capacity given what Huawei described as “scarce spectrum availability and challenging site acquisitions.” To fully explore how Telkomsel can evolve from LTE, the carrier and Huawei set up a Joint Innovation Center. Telkomsel Network Director Sukardi Silalahi said massive MIMO “can increase the capacity without adding sites and spectrum, thus reducing the cost per bit. As a part of roadmap and road to 5G implementation in Telkomsel, we will continue to work with our partner…to explore other technical breakthroughs to continue improving our user experience and building best network.” With compatriot service provider China Mobile, the largest mobile carrier in the world, Huawei recently demonstrated augmented and virtuality reality applications using mm wave and sub-6 GHz spectrum simultaneously to deliver 22 Gbps throughput and less than 0.5 millisecond latency. The demo used “5G Dual Connectivity,” using spectrum in the 3.5 GHz band and frequency in the Ka band, which covers from 26.5 GHz to 40 GHz. … Read more
Verizon signs billion-dollar fiber deal with Corning
Verizon Communications is set to bolster the backhaul of its wireless network through a three-year, $1.05 billion contract signed with Corning to supply fiber optic cable and associated hardware for Verizon’s One Fiber initiative. The deal calls for Corning to provide up to 12.4 million miles of optical fiber per year from 2018 through 2020. The equipment is to be part of Verizon’s network architecture designed to improve LTE coverage and set the table for planned “5G” technology deployments. “Our plans identified a shortfall in fiber supply, and Verizon has been working with business teams to forecast demand and fill supply gaps with existing suppliers,” said Viju Menon, chief supply chain officer at Verizon, in a statement on the deal. “Securing the required volume of optical fiber and hardware solutions with Corning will ensure we meet our planned rollout schedules.” The carrier cited its ongoing work in deploying fiber assets across Boston, which will see Verizon spend $300 million over a six-year period as part of the network enhancement project. The Boston project includes work with the city allowing for new pole attachment agreements for light and utility infrastructure, and is set to support launch of the carrier’s FiOS TV service. Nearby Brockton, Massachusetts, is one of the initial 11 markets where Verizon said it plans to trial 5G technology beginning this month as it continues to progress its next-generation network efforts. The trials are set to use millimeter wave spectrum bands, with a service focus on providing wireless internet access and voice over IP calling. Other markets included in the initial trials are Ann Arbor, Michigan; Atlanta; Bernardsville, New Jersey; Dallas; Denver; Houston; Miami; Sacramento, California; Seattle; and Washington, D.C. … Read more
Check out the RCR Wireless News Archives for more stories from the past.