Huawei is taking another stab at penetrating the U.S. telecom equipment market, this time taking aim at new wireless entrant Comcast.
The Chinese-based company has received approval from the Federal Communications Commission to demonstrate its equipment for Comcast on 3.5 GHz CBRS spectrum in Philadelphia. The test will be conducted at the Wells Fargo Center next week using Huawei’s RRU3232 remote radio unit.
The tests comes about a month after Comcast announced a new wireless partnership with Charter and opened enrollment for its new wireless service. The latter is being delivered via an MVNO agreement with Verizon; Comcast is using a hybrid approach that combines its WiFi hotspots with Verizon’s cellular network as a backup.
Comcast and Huawei are both members of the CBRS Alliance, which was formed last year following the FCC’s move in April 2015 to open the airwaves between 3550 MHz and 3700 MHz for shared wireless broadband use. The Alliance was created to accelerate the development and rollout of LTE-based solutions in the band.
Proponents of the band – like the Alliance – have cast it as the new, better WiFi. As Baicells Technologies President Patrick Leary recently put it, “this spectrum offers the same capabilities of WiFi to the industry and companies and organizations, but with none of the problems that plague WiFi.” Comcast could be looking to enhance its own network using CBRS as a supplement for its existing WiFi assets.
CBRS also appears to present another chance for Huawei to break back into the U.S. telecom equipment market via cooperation with Alliance partners. The company has been fighting to convince U.S. carriers to use its technology ever since 2012, when U.S. government officials suggested Chinese-made equipment presented a national security threat.
Huawei’s RRU3232 supports frequencies from 3.4 GHz to 3.7 GHz in carrier bandwidths of 5, 10, 15, and 20 MHz. In 4×4 mode, the unit supports two carriers; but when functioning as two 2×2 units, each unit supports two carriers.
Catch more of the latest on CBRS here in our Tuesdays with Roger conversation with Nokia.
Filed Under: Telecommunications (Spectrum)