CommLaw Group IoT Attorney Ron Quirk, has published a new article, A Giant Leap for 5G, in RCR Wireless News. This piece reports on the recent rapid progress toward commercial use of the 3.5 GHz spectrum band, due to: (a) public availability of the Wireless Innovation Forum’s (“WIN”) signaling protocol; and (b) a demonstration by Federated Wireless and Google parent company Alphabet that two cloud systems can work together to accomplish Spectrum Access System (“SAS”) interoperability that validates the WIN protocol.
The recent SAS interoperability advances are critical milestones in the development of 5G, because SAS is a highly-automated frequency coordinator that is the cornerstone of the three-tired shared 3.5 GHz spectrum allocation. Commercial availability of this band will foster wireless 5G services by providing the spectrum necessary to enable the densification of small cells and distributed antenna systems, which will deliver fast speeds and low latency to end users
The recently demonstrated SAS interoperability has set the clock ahead on commercial use of the 3.5 GHz band. And, the FCC is rapidly moving through its SAS determination process. Some experts predict that commercial availability of 3.5 GHz services in the unlicensed General Authorized Access (“GAA”) bands will commence in 2017, with Priority Access (“PA”) license auctions beginning in 2018. The players who get in the game early will likely be the winners.
Background on the business opportunities that will be created by commercial use of the 3.5 GHz band, and regulatory challenges of same can be found here.