Fixed Wireless Access for Internet Service Providers

Last Mile Connectivity for Every Home In America

When push comes to shove, your customers do not care how they’re receiving reliable Internet coverage to their homes—they only care that they are receiving it.

At Infinity Technology Solutions, we recommend that the Internet Service Providers (ISPs), WISPs, and Telcos we work with deploy a mix of technologies from fiber-optic broadband to microwave backhaul to serve their customers.

We also encourage our ISP clients to consider fixed-wireless access (FWA) in combination with existing broadband for first and last mile connectivity to customers living in remote locations that may lack a reliable broadband connection.

Fixed-wireless access provides a great complement to existing broadband.

The Limitations of Fiber Optic Wirelines in Internet Access

Communication Service Providers (CSPs) have accomplished fantastic feats with fiber optic wirelines. In laying fiber lines closer and closer to their customers’ residences, they have increased data transfer rates from kilobits to megabits per second (even up to and over a gig in some areas).

But the limitations of fiber optic wirelines as the only and best solution for CSPs to give faster access to customers may be coming to an end.

The price of laying fiber to replace those last few hundred feet of copper and coaxial can be too  high. CSPs are coming to look for more cost-effective ways to deliver on the national mandate that they provide Internet coverage to everyone.

Enter fixed-wireless access.

Fixed-wireless access addresses last-mile connectivity for residents where laying more fiber optic wireline is cost-prohibitive. FWA relies on LTE/5G radio in the sub 6 GHz frequency bands to provide coverage to large geographic areas at speeds that can exceed copper-based DSL.

With small cells operating at mmWave frequencies (24-39 GHz), fixed-wireless access can even offer Gigabit speeds comparable to fiber optic broadband!

The Broadband Fixed Wireless Access Convergence

To be considered a better option, fixed-wireless access gateways need to support the same residential applications as their wireline broadband counterparts.

With wireless broadband coverage, your average user typically connects with a single device (their smartphone) for a short period of time. Mobile devices possess great control plane traffic (it’s true), but they also cost a ton of money in data usage. 

One Gigabyte of data costs U.S. mobile users an average of $8. At this rate, one month of wireless broadband coverage on a mobile device can easily cost homeowners the same amount as  two years of wireline broadband service.

But again, what if installing fiber optic wireline is simply too expensive for you as an Internet Service Provider for your last-mile customers?

We hear stories online about parents driving their children to the parking lots of fast food restaurants to access their free public Wifi networks to do their homework. Obviously, this is not a solution to the crisis of those living on the outside of America’s internet grid.

Infinity Technology Solutions is committed to partnering with ISPs to provide Internet access to every residence in America by leveraging different connectivity solutions for specific locations and situations. This is what we mean by the broadband/fixed wireless access convergence—different solutions for different problems.

With fixed-wireless access gateways, users do not pay the excessive data usage fees associated with mobile wireless broadband because they don’t pay roaming charges. With FWA, all user devices are tethered to a single, stationary gateway at the home that enables up to a dozen devices to run at once.

TVs, personal computers, and gaming consoles can run at the same time using hundreds of Gigabytes charged at a flat monthly rate, without usage caps and surprise data roaming charges.

FWA Gateways and WBN Gateways

Fixed-wireless access gateways and wireline Broadband Network Gateways (BNGs) can be used in conjunction to lower operational costs and enhance performance by leveraging both on the same edge platform.

Both FWAs and BNGs are cost-optimized solutions for delivering high-speed broadband to homes and businesses. They are both purpose-built network appliances that leverage custom routing silicon for granular bandwidth management and hierarchical Quality of Service (QoS) to ensure that network resources are equally distributed across subscribers.

On BNGs and FWAs, the residential broadband services of Internet access and IPTV multicast replication are more cost-effective to deploy and scale than Internet offload (LIPA-SIPTO) and IP multicast replication (eMBMS) on mobile gateways. 

Nokia High-Speed Internet Gateways

Optimizing residential broadband coverage and fulfilling our national mandate to provide Internet access to all will require the selective deployment of both fixed-wireless access and fixed fiber optic broadband technologies.

Nokia has a number of high-speed internet gateway solutions in the domain of fixed-wireless access.

Infinity, as you might be aware, is an industry partner and master distributor of Nokia.

You need a SPGW (Serving Gateway/Packet Data Network Gateway) network function, a subset of the Mobility Management Entity (MME), and Home Subscriber Service (HSS) functionality, such as Nokia 7750 Service Routers and SR OS operating system, for a fixed-wireless access gateway.

Additionally, Nokia’s Compact Mobility Unit (CMU) appliance serves FWA Mobility Management Entity (MME) and Home Subscriber Service (HSS) functionality. 

Infinity relies on the decades of experience Nokia brings in the deployment of both fixed-wireless and fixed-wireline high-speed, performance gateways. 

Infinity has expertise in leveraging fiber backhaul infrastructure to assist Service Providers in both wireline and fixed-wireless access to provide high-speed, low-latency Internet to their customers—especially those living in remote locations.  

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