Charter's 5G Plan Includes Fixed Wireless & 802.11ax Wi-Fi

Wireless newcomer Charter is already planning a detailed 5G roadmap based on a combination of fixed wireless access, improved Wi-Fi, and a number of other technologies meant to provide American consumers with access to the next generation of mobile networks. The Stamford, Connecticut-based firm recently became the first stateside entity to provide its customers with routers that support 802.11ax, the latest and most advanced Wi-Fi standard specifically designed for high-density environments that's believed to be a crucial component of the future of the Internet of Things and a number of other emerging technologies.

With virtual reality, 4K streaming, and similar offerings now slowly moving toward mainstream popularity, 802.11ax is meant to serve as a solution to such bandwidth-intensive applications, both in public and private households. Charter's decision to embrace the technology in a swift manner will pave the way for such seamless communications being offered on a national scale in the near future, its SVP Craig Cowden said during a recent hearing with one U.S. Senate committee. Charter launched its Spectrum Mobile service earlier this summer, debuting a solution that's heavily reliant on its network of Wi-Fi hotspots and could hence massively benefit to any improvements to the thereof. In combination with Verizon's mobile network, Charter delivers a hybrid MVNO service that's meant to help it diversify its business and bring more competition to the wireless segment.

Besides improving the Wi-Fi part of its product equation, Charter is presently also planning small cell deployment that will densify its network, boost its 4G LTE offerings, and prepare it for the incoming arrival of 5G. 5G-based fixed wireless access is also part of the company's ambitions due to its potential to deliver a technology that's superior to traditional broadband Internet services in every respect, at least from a consumer's point of view. Its partnership with Verizon may hence end up being expanded given how the largest telecom giant in the country is presently the only major wireless player to commit significant resources to FWA solutions.

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