CBRS Unlicensed 4G Service Anticipated in 4th Quarter 2018
After 9 authorized tests and 12 certification requests, the Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) Alliance is moving forward with the “OnGo” certification of devices that use LTE technology. Wireless services using public 3.5GHz spectrum are expected to emerge later this year. It is unknown when licensed 3.5GHz spectrum will be sold. General Authorized Access spectrum will be part of the initial services, providing unlicensed LTE-like coverage in high-traffic mobile coverage areas. The CBRS is counting on devices being able to connect to it. Verizon expects to have 3.5GHz capable handsets in 2019. Other carriers moving forward with CBRS include AT&T, T-Mobile US Inc. and Google.
Fast Facts About CBRS
- Carriers are looking for more access to spectrum in order to extend coverage and capacity of their LTE services using the 3.5GHz band. Cable operators, managed service providers and other enterprises are also looking to use the spectrum.
- CBRS are expected to be used to replace last-mile fiber access, deliver fixed wireless services and point-to-multipoint offerings.
- Companies who have joined the CBRS Alliance include: Ericsson, Nokia, Cisco, Ruckus, Intel and Qualcomm. Samsung also belongs to the CBRS Alliance with Apple expected to follow.
- The FCC is expected to begin certifying equipment through a collaboration with the Wireless Innovation Forum. CBRS network rollouts are expected in the second half of 2017.
- CBRS primarily focuses on 4G LTE services, but there are no restrictions on using the 3.5GHz band for 5G services.
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