BBWN Bites: Google, Microsoft & WISPA: Fixed Wireless Can Bridge Digital Divide
Also, Atlantic Broadband strides into more gigabit country, NBN rejoices over HFC trial, UK agency reviews Inmarsat deal and a three-way partnership forms to advance cable in smart homes.
Google, Microsoft and the Wireless Internet Service Providers Association (WISPA) want the FCC to allow incumbents to share C-band spectrum -- especially 3700 MHz and 4200 MHz -- a move that would bring broadband to up to 80 million more Americans, they said. This would enable fixed-wireless operators to use the spectrum band currently limited to incumbents, mainly satellite operators. Requests for spectrum-sharing are growing, but this proposal seeks to have new and existing providers in different geographies to use the same spectrum. Other spectrum-sharing approaches, like Microsoft's TV white spaces, grant fixed-wireless access by assigning gear to different channels within a band.
Atlantic Broadband, a subsidiary of Cogeco Cable, continues to expand its DOCSIS 3.1-based gigabit delivery network for residential and business customers. This week the cableco announced it is increasing speeds in its Western Pennsylvania, West Virginia and New York service areas, as well as in King George, Westmoreland, Essex, Richmond, Mathews and Northumberland counties in Virginia. These launches support Atlantic Broadband's goal to deliver gigabit Internet to most of its 11-state footprint along the East Coast by year-end.
NBN said it attained download speeds of 988 Mbps over HFC in a recent DOCSIS 3.1 lab test, which demonstrated how hybrid-fiber coax cable has evolved to meet the need for more capacity and greater speed, according to NBN Co. Chief Technology Officer Ray Owen. (See D3.1 Finally (Really) Debuts Down Under.)
Private equity group Connect Bidco's planned $3.4 billion acquisition of satellite provider Inmarsat is being scrutinized by Britain's Competition and Markets Authority. The deal could raise public interest concerns, according to the CMA.
The Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE), the International Society of Broadband Experts (ISBE) and the Continental Automated Buildings Association (CABA) are teaming up to drive standards creation and adoption, plus offer educational opportunities around cable network capabilities, smart home, smart cities and IoT services. By selecting cable's 10G as the basis of new construction, members get the high speed, low latency, highly reliable and highly secure services that make the "heart of intelligent buildings," said Chris Bastian, chief technology officer and senior vice president of engineering SCTE•ISBE.
Making Those Numbers
NBN Co. tests its in-field HFC gigabit technology trial download speeds. (Source: NBN Co.)
— Alison Diana, Editor, Broadband World News. Follow us on Twitter or @alisoncdiana.
(Home page photo: Rene Asmussen from Pexels)
Here's where you can find episode links for 'The Divide,' Light Reading's podcast series featuring conversations with broadband providers and policymakers working to close the digital divide.
As we have for the past two years, Light Reading will present our Cable Next-Gen Europe conference as a free digital symposium on June 21.
Charter has sparked RDOF work in all 24 states where it won bids. The cable op booked about $19 million in RDOF revenues in Q1, and expects to have about $9 million per month come in over the next ten years.
As we have for the past two years, Light Reading will stage the Cable Next-Gen Technologies & Strategies conference as a free digital event over two half-days in mid-March.
Launch of 2-Gig and 5-Gig FTTP tiers in 70-plus markets puts more pressure on cable ops to enhance their existing DOCSIS 3.1 network or accelerate their upgrade activity centered on the new DOCSIS 4.0 specs.