Adtran makes its mmWave FWA move

There are increasing signs that millimetre wave might finally become useful with Adtran joining the race to apply it to fixed wireless access.

The new MetNet mmWave mesh wireless access and backhaul solution makes use of the 60 GHz band to provide high-bandwidth wireless connectivity in areas where it’s not practical to use fixed-line. One of the benefits of using the 60 GHz band is that it’s unlicensed, unlike lower frequency mmWave bands, which means Adtran is able to avoid the clutches of rapacious licensing authorities.

“The majority of mmWave attention has centred on licensed spectrum bands, some of which can provide Gigabit data rates but at a cost of hundreds of millions of dollars for broad national coverage,” said Heavy Reading Analyst Sterling Perrin, in the Adtran press release. “Now, 60 GHz mmWave mesh technology can provide Gigabit access capacities while meeting reach and reliability requirements over a wireless connection without the licensing cost burden.”

“The Adtran MetNet 60GHz solution is the only solution that economically extends Gigabit service wirelessly to deliver both residential and business services where terrain, population density and regulations limit the deployment of fibre,” said Robert Conger, SVP of Technology and Strategy at Adtran. “Now more than ever, service providers are looking for innovative and reliable solutions that simplify the deployment and maintenance of Gigabit service architectures that create new revenue streams while lowering the total cost of service.”

This announcement follows Nokia’s claimed breakthrough earlier this week, indicating that the telecoms industry may finally have found a practical use for frequency that has proven itself unsuitable for mobile connectivity. The announcements were timed to coincide with the Broadband World Forum event, where fixed wireless access was a major theme, along with the belated explosion in fibre roll-out in many countries.

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