Verizon Is Looking To Use CBRS Spectrum For Small Cells

Advertisement
Advertisement

Verizon is one of many companies who claim membership in the CBRS Alliance, and their personal idea for productive use of LTE-based solutions in the 3.5 gigahertz CBRS band set is to deploy small cells in it. These small cells will not run 5G technology for now, instead bolstering Verizon's existing LTE network to add coverage and capacity. According to their VP of networking technology, Adam Koeppe, Verizon has already conducted basic infrastructure tests on small cell-based LTE buildouts in these bands, and are satisfied enough with the results that they may begin deploying as soon as 2018. Exactly when they will begin deployment will all depend on when the right equipment is available, including compatible devices for consumers to access those small cells with.

The details of the plan are actually fairly simple. Verizon will only be deploying two types of small cells in the approved spectrum, as the plan currently stands. Low-power base stations will take care of small areas and boost indoor coverage, while high-power cells will be deployed to help provide a network boost to outdoor areas like downtown strips and college campuses, where signal will have to travel somewhat far and may be serving a large number of users. Verizon noted that a central, commercialized method of accessing the CBRS spectrum will likely be key in ensuring that the sharing rules set forth for it are sustainable and beneficial to all users of the spectrum.

CBRS Alliance proponents are not only excited to see concrete sharing rules in place for a wide swath of spectrum that can be used by commercial wireless providers, but are also calling CBRS "the innovation band" because of its open nature, which allows for relatively unknown elements to use the spectrum for purposes that may otherwise not be considered. The band is also being widely considered for 5G use, which could make it a universally usable and compatible band and boost its potential for more unified and open use worldwide. For the time being, 5G technology in its current form is not being planned with the use of the CBRS bands in mind, at least in the United States.

Advertisement