Tag Archives: 5G London

Arqiva acquires 28GHz spectrum licence for 5G fixed wireless access in London

Arqiva, the leading UK communications infrastructure company, has today announced its acquisition of an additional 28GHz spectrum licence from intelligent managed services provider, Luminet.

The Region A licence for 2x 112MHz covers Central and Greater London and bolsters Arqiva’s existing nationwide spectrum band ownership.

The 28GHz spectrum band is the standard band used for 5G connectivity trials in the USA, Japan and South Korea focused on Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) – offering promise for future 5G implementations in the UK.

The next key milestone in 5G deployment will be March 2018 when the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) completes Release 15. This will be the first standardisation of 5G, paving the way for FWA to be the first commercial release of 5G technology.

This commercialisation of 5G standards will allow vendors and operators to deploy at scale an ecosystem that spans from chip-set to network equipment on a global basis, therefore driving further economies of scale.

“5G connectivity is a highly debated topic, especially with regards to what it will deliver and by when. However, the FWA component is set for a head start thanks to the drive from major global fixed line and mobile operators as both a substitute and a companion to traditional fibre services. 3GPP certification is critical to achieving global acceptance.

“5G FWA is an exciting opportunity to deliver true ultrafast broadband above 500Mbps to millions of households; this is especially relevant in the UK where so few households are connected by fibre to the home (FTTH) or fibre to the cabinet (FTTC). FWA has the ability to become a truly alternative technology to deliver fibre-like services.

“In purchasing this additional licence we are able to further our ambitions in this area, standing ourselves in good stead to deliver a compelling 5G FWA wholesale service to UK mobile and fixed operators across the country, and with even more capacity in Greater London.”

Arqiva is set to conduct the UK’s first 5G FWA field trial, in partnership with Samsung, in London this summer. Using the 28GHz band, the trial will explore the possibilities of ultra-fast, high bandwidth connectivity via wireless technology rather than conventional wired services.

“The advent of 5G is set to be one of the most exciting digital developments of the decade, and we will be following Arqiva’s trial with interest.

“Divesting the spectrum was a strategic business decision for Luminet as we continue to build on our existing 400Sqkm London network and enhance our focus on wholesale for our intelligent GB connectivity and computing services.”

Source: Arqiva

O2 prepares London for 5G with sweeping small cell installations

O2 5GLondon

O2 is laying the groundwork for 5G adoption in London by installing a series of coverage-boosting ‘small cells’ around the capital.

The UK mobile network has revealed that it is spending £80 million to install 1,400 small cells in collaboration with Cisco across key areas of Greater London by the end of 2017.

It’s expected that the provision of these small cells will enhance the mobile signal, both indoors and outdoors, for businesses and consumers in London. Crucially, it will also pave the way for the rapid deployment of 5G connectivity when it starts to become available to the public from 2020.

Derek McManus, COO of O2, said: “We recognise that customers’ need for mobile data in London and other urban areas continues to grow at a rapid pace. We understand the importance of digital connectivity in terms of driving the economy and ensuring that London can continue to compete on a global scale. This is why we’re investing in a range of innovative measures from small cells to macro masts in order to ensure we continue to give customers what they need; reliability and coverage wherever they go.”

Small cells in the big city

As the name suggests, these small cells will be significantly more compact and numerous than the hulking phone masts of the 4G generation and earlier. In fact, they’re small enough to attach to lampposts and onto the sides of buildings.

It’s all part of O2’s wider plan to prepare for the oncoming 5G revolution. Earlier in the year, O2 issued a report stating that 5G could overtake traditional fibre broadband in economic terms by 2026.

Around the same time, it was also announced that O2 would be creating a free public Wi-Fi network powered by 4G technology for the City of London area, also known as the Square Mile. This is initially intended to provide enhanced mobile coverage in an area where the presence of tall buildings causes problems for smartphone users.

Once again, though, the long-term aim of this move is to prepare the City for speedy 5G adoption when it arrives.

Source: 5G.co.uk