Cox Business joined a growing group of wholesale providers in offering small cell backhaul to wireless operators, but it is also going to take advantage of the emerging need for turnkey services.
Alaskan carrier General Communication Inc. (GCI) is partnering with ClearSky Technologies to roll out and manage residential femtocells for its customers in an effort to boost coverage. GCI is using ClearSky's Small Cell as a Service (SCaaS) platform and in October signed a multi-year contract with ClearSky to enhance coverage and capacity for its wireless users.
In meetings with investment analysts, executives from tower company Crown Castle reiterated their belief that top wireless carriers will continue to densify and expand their nationwide wireless networks through a combination of new spectrum, small cells and standard macro cell buildouts.
Cox Business is taking advantage of the emerging small cell opportunity with a new turnkey service that it says will enable wireless operators to deploy small cells to extend coverage and capacity.
Verizon and American Tower executives highlighted the challenges to installing small cells and Distributed Antenna Systems, especially in urban markets and inside buildings, even as they acknowledged that such installations will be key to their businesses going forward.
Sprint is seeing positive early results from its plans to densify its network, but the company's executives did not provide many details about how far along the project is and how long it will take.
The Small Cell Forum will provide an update on the state of the industry when it meets in Dallas this week, illustrating how the industry is maturing in the residential and SOHO arenas-- with more than 11 million cells deployed and live in that sector.
Recently, I have been writing about the decline of the macro base station market, predicting that, in rough numbers, the investment in "Tower and Power" will drop by half over the next five years. Unfortunately, I have heard very little disagreement from my subscribers that sell base stations and semiconductor devices. The gravy train is slowing down.
Verizon Wireless is pushing ahead with plans to deploy Cloud-RAN network architecture and also will keep deploying small cells and distributed antenna systems (DAS) to handle growing capacity requirements in urban markets.
Crown Castle CEO Ben Moreland said he is going to refrain from giving detailed assessments of the buildout plans of tower and infrastructure company's carrier customers, and that he has been asked by carriers not get too specific on Crown's earnings calls.