Qualcomm, hand in hand with Nokia and Alphabet's Access Group, has created the world's first private LTE network based on CBRS spectrum. CBRS, which stands for Citizens Broadband Radio Service, is the spectrum bands from 3550 megahertz up to 3700 megahertz, which has been paired with an advanced spectrum allocation system to ensure maximum availability, capacity, and speed for licensees. Thanks to this system and the wide range of spectrum available, local licenses can be plentiful enough to allow the creation of private LTE networks. One such network was built out by the aforementioned networking entities and demoed at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The demo consisted of 360-degree video being beamed from inside the cars driving on the track during the Richard Petty Driving Experience.
The 360-degree video transmitted over the private LTE network was consistent at a high bitrate, despite the relative saturation of the network in the area, and the high speeds that the cars were traveling at. With CBRS being based on intermittently shared spectrum, such private networks can overlap and still offer great coverage and performance, as was demonstrated with the 360 degree in-car video feed. This means that places like college campuses, sports arenas, concert venues, and businesses can all set up their own private LTE networks in the CBRS band.
Qualcomm, Nokia, and the Access Group within Alphabet are all founding members of the CBRS Alliance, and will strive to promote LTE-based solutions within the CBRS band, with the end goal being total ubiquity of the technology. A private LTE network does not suffer from the issues with latency and capacity that a normal LTE network has, which makes it an attractive proposition for a large number of use cases of various sizes, all the way down to possible home use, should the technology to set up and maintain the networks eventually become cheaper and easier to use. For now, the CBRS band and solutions in it are strictly in testing status, which means that they are unlikely to see the light of day in any sort of official capacity for a while. At the moment, nobody in the CBRS Alliance has come forward to lay out a particular date for wide availability.