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5G Fixed Wireless Access

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(Jungfrau, Switzerland - Alvin Wei-Cheng Wong)

 

More than 1 billion homes worldwide still find themselves without a regular broadband connection. Fixed Wireless Access, or FWA, is an established means of providing Internet access to homes using wireless mobile network technology rather than fixed lines. For example, current A&T Fixed Wireless Internet delivers high-speed Internet service to eligible rural households and small businesses via an outdoor antenna and indoor Wi-Fi Gateway router.

"While FWA can often prove more convenient to set up, its key weakness compared to fixed line broadband is performance. Current mobile network technology simply isn’t able to provide download speeds or latency levels that can compete with a modern fibre broadband connection. However, the next stage of FWA will utilise 5G network technology, such as beam-forming and a high-frequency mmWave (millimeter wave) spectrum, to provide a considerable performance boost to wireless broadband services.

5G FWA retains the key benefit of current FWA offerings in that it enables the establishment of a quick and cheap broadband service, even in areas that don’t have ready access to fixed line home broadband. 5G FWA doesn’t require any engineering works at the customer end - just the provision of so-called Customer Premise Equipment (CPEs), which can be readily self-installed by the subscriber. 

The chief advantage here, however, is performance. 5G Fixed Wireless Access will be able to deliver a level of service that’s similar to a fibre-based broadband network, and should even be able to provide data speeds that are well ahead of current broadband standards. Initial 5G trials reported download speeds of 10 to 25Gbps, while the current average UK home broadband speed is around 30Mbps. While so-called ‘gigabit-speed’ home broadband services are incoming, 5G FWA could prove to be a match in many instances.

5G FWA will support future mobile usage, and will operate to the same standards as forthcoming 5G mobile networks. This presents mobile operators with the opportunity to use 5G FWA as a means to prepare their networks for full-scale 5G network deployments. In other words, 5G FWA can be used as a stepping stone to full 5G mobility. It could potentially contribute to a much smoother and quicker transition from 4G to 5G for mobile users. Conversely, of course, future 5G FWA services will be able to make use of 5G network technology as it spreads around the country." -- [5G.Co.UK]

 
 
 
 

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