Broadband Forum Attracts Start-ups and
The Broadband Forum recently welcomed 15 new members—including three start-ups— as it continues to address the fast-changing
broadband landscape. The broad range of industry expertise displayed by the new member companies highlights the continuously expanding breadth of the Broadband Forum’s work, which has grown to include a strong
focus on next-generation broadband technologies such
as virtualization, software-defined networks (SDN), IoT,
next-generation optical networks, 5G and Gfast.
The latest additions are CableLabs, EANTC, Fujitsu
Ltd., Genesis Technical Systems, Go!Foton, Jabil Circuit (Shanghai) Company, MaxLinear, Radisys, Shenzhen Gongjin Electronics, SK Telecom, Telekom Slovenia, Tellabs, TiBit Communications, VoltServer and
Works Systems (Tianjin) Co. Ltd.
Robin Mersh, CEO of the Broadband Forum, said:
LTE Unlicensed and Shared Spectrum
“We’re delighted to be able to welcome so many new
members, including—for the first time—start-up com-
panies, as this is where so much innovation is happen-
ing. The work the Forum is carrying out to deliver on
our Broadband 20/20 vision is attracting a lot of inter-
est from companies across the industry and the Fo-
rum is the perfect platform for them, as every member
has an equal voice, whether they are a start-up or a
long-established operator. The broadband industry is
changing and evolving at a rapid pace and the addi-
tion of these new members demonstrates the Forum
remains a clear voice amid the changes.”
Broadband 20/20 focuses on leveraging emerging
technologies and approaches to enable new services
and business opportunities across the entire network-
enabled broadband ecosystem from user devices to
cloud data centres.
Technologies Spark Network Evolution
In the Network Evolution in Unlicensed and Shared Spectrum report, ABI Research found that technologies taking advantage
of this spectrum type are not only attracting mobile
network operators’ (MNO) interest for low cost network densification, but also brand-new entrants. This
is due to the opportunities that the network technologies promote for densification, neutral hosts, as well
as enterprise and private network operators. The firm
further predicts that new LTE unlicensed and shared
spectrum technologies will launch a $1.7 billion hardware market over the next five years, including LTE Unlicensed, CBRS and MulteFire.
“LTE-U/LAA will appeal to MNOs planning to densify
but with insufficient spectrum or CAPEX to acquire it,”
said Nick Marshall, research director at ABI Research.
“Meanwhile, MulteFire and CBRS technologies prom-
ise very low network buildout costs with economics
that threaten to disrupt the DAS market. The technolo-
gies appeal to many communications service providers
(CSP), especially as CBRS pioneers a significant change
in spectrum management for the industry. Also, tradi-
tional spectrum refarming cannot match the increasing
mobile broadband throughput demands in the migra-
tion to 5G.”
Given power restric-
tions in unlicensed and
shared spectrum, these
technologies are most
suitable for small cell
indoor or venue deploy-
ments. With low to no spectrum acquisition costs and
deployment economics comparable to Wi-Fi, in-build-
ing wireless penetration in the vast middle-sized and
enterprise verticals will increase dramatically and ac-
count for more than half of in-building small cell ship-
ments in 2021.
There are many companies innovating in this ecosystem ranging from the Spectrum Access System (SAS)
providers and Environmental Sensing Capability (ESC)
operators for CBRS, including Alphabet, CommScope,
Federated Wireless and small cell and infrastructure
vendors like BaiCells, Casa Systems, Ericsson, Huawei,
ip.access, Nokia, Ruckus and SpiderCloud.
“We stand at the verge of significant disruption with
in-building wireless and spectrum management technologies,” concluded Marshall.
Wireless X Labs Advisory Committee
The Mobile World Congress Shanghai 2017 saw the establishment of the Wireless X Labs’ Advisory Committee, which gathered
together leaders from smart manufacturing, automobile manufacturing, drone technology, data intelligence
and artificial intelligence. Wireless X Labs is Huawei’s
mobile application scenarios lab for wireless networks.
At the start of the year, Wireless X Labs targeted
connected drones, cloud VR/AR, wireless robotics
and connected vehicles as four research priorities. In
Shanghai, the committee reviewed the research into
these areas during the first committee round-table,
examined the topics for 2018 and evaluated the technical and cooperative feasibility for potential projects.
“Wireless X Labs is an open platform that will bring
together operators, technology providers and vertical
industry partners to jointly explore future use cases for
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Richard Mumford, International Editor
MICROWAVE JOURNAL AUGUST 2017 51
“...a $1.7 billion