Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) Makes a Big Impact in Five Key Areas

The initial commercial deployments of Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) — a major wireless industry milestone are underway. The availability of the 3.5 GHz spectrum will have far-reaching implications across the wireless ecosystem. Accessing the shared spectrum offers opportunities for many players within the wireless ecosystem.

Tormod Larsen is the Chief Technology Officer at ExteNet Systems. He shared his take on key opportunities that the newly available spectrum. Specifically, across the wireless ecosystem, in an interview with Connected Real Estate Magazine.

“CBRS is set to be the foundation for innovative 4G and 5G networks, and the impact of this new shared spectrum is going to be revolutionary,” said Larsen. “CBRS is capable of serving many use cases from private LTE to supporting cable operators and serving as a neutral host for carriers. replacing how DAS worked in the past,” Larsen said.

Larsen says there are five areas where we can expect to see CBRS emerge in the wireless ecosystem.

Fixed Broadband in Rural America

The CBRS spectrum is being used for fixed wireless in rural locations that requires broadband connectivity. CBRS can fulfill the dire need for access to connectivity for more than 20 million Americans. The limited reach of high-speed broadband is exacerbating the divide in prosperity across the U.S. . Limiting access to education for school children and business operations in rural communities. CBRS will play a critical role in bridging this digital divide. The spectrum sharing capabilities of CBRS will create new opportunities. Telecom operators offer carrier-grade a fixed wireless service. The main benefit would be improving broadband coverage in rural America.

The CBRS unlicensed spectrum will reduce the barriers to entry new wireless internet service providers. Rural local exchange carriers, and electric distributor cooperatives to deploy carrier-grade fixed wireless. All this without having to invest in a licensed spectrum.

CBRS & Private LTE

Mining, warehousing, manufacturing, and utilities are industry verticals where CBRS is important. CBRS via private LTE makes significant inroads, according to Larsen. There are distinct market segments for initial CBRS deployments. Private LTE networks for secure, mission-critical IoT, voice/data applications that do not require any public access and enterprises that need a combination of both private LTE and public access connectivity. The early adopters of private LTE using the CBRS spectrum will be mainly large public venues. Sports stadiums, hotels, casinos, warehouses, and industrial/manufacturing plants, Larsen said.