Spectrum sharing technology startup Federated Wireless is urging the FCC to adopt a proposed hybrid licensing scheme for the 37 GHz band, as it will best ensure the availability of "meaningful indoor coverage," and operators will directly benefit. But both Verizon (NYSE: VZ) and AT&T (NYSE: T) are on record saying they're concerned the 37 GHz hybrid proposal would adversely affect 5G deployments.
Verizon argues that the hybrid proposal for the 37 GHz band would create unnecessary complications for terrestrial licensees and delay the emergence of 5G operations. AT&T also has said it is concerned the hybrid approach would be burdensome to administer and could interfere with 5G deployments.
Federated Wireless notes in its recent filing with the FCC that a handful of commenters on the commission's proposals for high-band spectrum argue that the licensing and service rules should be in keeping with the commission's traditional approaches rather than use tools like Spectrum Access System (SAS) technologies.
"As Federated Wireless has pointed out, use of exclusive licensing regimes has led to decades-long delays as auctions are conducted, standards are fleshed out, and equipment developed and manufactured -- as starkly illustrated in the case of the 700 MHz band, licensed under the Part 27 rules," the company says in a filing submitted by CTO Kurt Schaubach.
"To the extent that commenters object to the application of SAS technologies to the mmW bands on the grounds that the technology is 'untested,' Federated Wireless acknowledges that a SAS is a recent innovation, but its technological underpinnings -- including propagation modeling, radio environment sensing, cloud computing, and cognitive radio -- are not," the company said. "These are well known, proven technologies widely used throughout the information and communications technology sector. The SAS represents a fusion of these technologies rather than a completely new and unproven technology."
Federated Wireless last fall celebrated a milestone in the launch of its CINQ XP platform, a sort of Uber for spectrum in that it will be allocated when and where people need it. CINQ XP is the company's first commercial product that provides a private, cloud-based network for carriers to share spectrum.
Federated in its latest FCC filing also notes that the commission already has initiated its process to certify SAS administrators for the 3.5 GHz band. Initial applications are due April 15, and through that process, the commission is gaining more knowledge on the functioning and capabilities of SAS and Environmental Sensing Capability (ESC) technologies.
Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT), the Open Technology Institute/Public Knowledge, Huawei, Rockwell Aviation and Cisco have joined Federated Wireless in supporting the commission's proposed hybrid licensing scheme for the 37 GHz band.
"With a band interoperability mandate in the 37 GHz band, as is the case in the 3.5 GHz Band, the hybrid licensing scheme could create the opportunity for carriers to extend the reach of their networks and for building owners to participate in the technology and scale that carriers enjoy," Federated Wireless said. "By allowing carriers to extend their networks in this way, the hybrid licensing scheme increases usage of carriers' services, to their direct benefit. By allowing premises occupants access to the technology and scale generally reserved to the largest carriers, the hybrid licensing scheme will lower costs and better ensure the availability of robust indoor coverage."
- see this Federated filing
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