C Spire has been granted authority to test Cohere Technologies’ new modulation technique using Orthogonal Time Frequency Space Modulation (OTFS).
Positioned as a replacement to OFDM, OTFS is a new wireless modulation technology developed by Cohere that has been proposed as part of the 5G radio interface in 3GPP.
According to C Spire’s application, the new modulation technique promises to deliver high spectral efficiency, no intra-cell interference, resilience to fading, multipath diversity and increased throughput. That pretty much explains why C Spire wants to test the technology at its facilities in Ridgeland, Mississippi. They plan to use 3650-3700 MHz spectrum.
A Fierce 15 company in 2016, Cohere describes OTFS as a paradigm shift in wireless networking that creates a two-dimensional view of the delay and Doppler of the wireless channel. Cohere CEO Shlomo Rakib learned about OTFS from a professor at the University of Texas at Austin and started exploring how it could be applied in wireless. That teacher, Ronny Hadani, is now the CTO of Cohere.
Former Verizon CTO Richard “Dick” Lynch recently joined Cohere's board. Lynch is currently president of FB Associates, an advisory and consulting firm; he previously was executive vice president and CTO for Verizon Communications between 2007 and 2011 and EVP and CTO of Verizon Wireless and its predecessors since 1990.
C Spire is the sixth largest U.S. operator by subscribers—U.S. Cellular is No. 5—and it has consistently been out in front in terms of working with the latest technologies.
In September, the operator said it will launch fixed wireless services in eight initial markets in Mississippi, with more to follow. The company told FierceWireless it is using “multiple technologies and spectrums depending on the options available in any given area,” and that it expects to eventually cover 200,000 consumers and businesses in the state with the technology.
Earlier this year, C Spire confirmed it was conducting a 5G R&D test with Phazr at its corporate offices in Ridgeland, Mississippi. That followed a similar application that Verizon filed for conducting tests of Phazr equipment at facilities in Euless, Texas.
C Spire was the first to successfully demonstrate a 5G fixed wireless solution in Mississippi using Nokia equipment with a direct connection to its fiber-based commercial television service. That test delivered C Spire Fiber consumer television content, including ultrahigh-definition resolution video, with speeds up to 2.2 Gigabits per second (Gbps) and ultralow latency below 1.4 milliseconds over the 5G wireless link.