It is no secret that cable operators in the United States and elsewhere are rapidly deploying millions of private and public Wi-Fi hotspots. Though cable MSO executives often contend the primary reason for their interest in Wi-Fi is to keep their customers satisfied, many industry observers suggest there is an even bigger plan that could impact traditional cellular operators and potentially alter the overall wireless industry landscape. FierceWirelessTech has talked to a number of experts to nail down the top five motivators for cable companies to become Wi-Fi providers.
UK-based mobile operators rejected calls by the government to create a national roaming agreement in an effort to improve poor signal coverage in rural areas, although operators say they are working with the government by looking at various options to help address the problem of mobile black spots, or "not" spots.
Fastback Networks said its backhaul radio is now capable of throughput exceeding 800 Mbps up to a distance of 2 kilometers, whether in line-of-sight (LOS), near-line-of-sight (nLOS) or non-line-of-sight (NLOS) conditions.
Cable operators have dallied in wireless numerous times over the years, but nothing has really stuck. Their Pivot and SpectrumCo initiatives came and went, and it seemed the MSOs might never carve out a significant role in wireless communications. But their wireless prospects changed for the better as soon as they started dabbling in unlicensed, rather than licensed, spectrum and nomadic, rather than highly mobile, services.
Sprint added 15 new rural wireless carrier partners to its LTE roaming program, growing the size of its LTE roaming footprint by more than 4 million POPs.
Wind is reportedly moving ahead with a deal that would see the VimpelCom-owned Italian operator sell and lease back 11,000 mobile masts in order to cut debt, after talks with Hutchison Whampoa-owned rival Three Italy hit a road bump.
South Africa-based MTN is to form a mobile towers joint venture with IHS for the mobile operator's Nigerian business, with reports estimating the value of the deal at around $2 billion (€1.5 billion).
Taqua acquired partner Kineto Wireless to more seamlessly deliver Voice over Wi-Fi and Voice over LTE solutions to operators. The privately held companies did not disclose the value of the transaction.
AT&T Mobility said it has hit its goal of reaching 300 million covered POPs with LTE several months ahead of its target.
Back in June, I promised to spend some time this summer (and maybe even into the fall) talking about LTE TDD. That started with a discussion of how massive deployments in The People's Republic could lead one to think of LTE TDD as a Chinese technology, a notion that runs counter to any interests in seeing the LTE's TDD variant benefit from global manufacturing and R&D scale. A look back at the development of LTE standards, then, backed up the notion that, from its inception, TDD was envisioned as an integral part of LTE, not a narrow, regional use case.