Boingo prepares to launch CBRS in stadiums, airports

Boingo already has experience deploying a CBRS network at a major airport. (Pixabay)

The FCC’s approval for companies to start initial commercial deployments (ICDs) in the Citizens Broadband Radio Services (CBRS) 3.5 GHz band paves the way for neutral host providers like Boingo Wireless to launch CBRS.

An early pioneer in the CBRS space, Boingo already has experience in the band, having rolled out a private LTE network in the 3.5 GHz band at Dallas Love Field Airport, where administrative staff have been using the service.

Boingo CEO Mike Finley told FieceWireless that the company sees CBRS as another part of its converged wireless portfolio that includes licensed, unlicensed and shared spectrum.

“I applaud the FCC for all the work they’re doing to increase the spectrum,” and CBRS is one of those. For Boingo, it means another piece of spectrum to deliver services at airports, stadiums, transportation hubs and other venues. “I’ve been a believer in small cells for a long time, so I think this is just another way that it will be enhanced,” he said.

RELATED: Boingo’s CBRS trial at Dallas Love Field gets updated commercial deployment status

Large public venues—the kind where Boingo provides services—were identified early as prime candidates for CBRS deployments because they’re often dense, high-trafficked areas. Wireless operators, neutral host providers like Boingo or venues themselves can use unlicensed CBRS to enhance coverage.  

According to Alan Ewing, executive director of the CBRS Alliance, Boingo has been one of the strongest advocates for CBRS and OnGo, the brand name for CBRS technology. “With the newly-announced commercial availability of OnGo services on the CBRS band, businesses can explore a variety of deployment options to support their connectivity needs, including neutral host leveraging private LTE,” he said in a press release. “We at the Alliance applaud Boingo’s active support and continued commitment in helping to realize the potential of OnGo.”