Telecom Industry News - January 2017

Advanced wireless initiatives continue to dominate the news, including ongoing 5G developments and improved global connectivity.
Bell Canada and AT&T announced this month that Canada's largest communications company is testing AT&T’s Open Source ECOMP platform for creating and managing a software-defined network. AT&T stated it is planning to release the platform as open source software in conjunction with the Linux Foundation in the first quarter of 2017.

Bell Canada is one step closer to acquiring Manitoba Telecom Services as MTS received approval this month from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to transfer its Broadcasting Distribution Undertaking (BDU) licenses to Bell Canada. 

In other CRTC news, the commission this month declared that all Canadians should have access to an unlimited data plan option and speeds of at least 150 Mbps download and 10 Mbps upload. The CRTC stated that broadband access Internet service is now considered a basic telecommunications service for all Canadians and is creating a new fund that will invest up to $750 million over and above existing government programs.

Takes on Technology

Advanced wireless initiatives continue to dominate the news, including ongoing 5G developments and improved global connectivity.

IEEE, the world's largest technical professional organization advancing technology for humanity, announced the launch of the IEEE 5G Initiative with the purpose of engaging professionals worldwide from industry, government, and academia to work on solving the challenges associated with 5G and lay the foundation to realize its potential. The IEEE 5G Initiative, which includes contributions from many IEEE societies, has several working groups for which it seeks volunteers from both industry and academia. 

For their part in assisting with the rapid development of 5G, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., Ericsson, and SK Telecom announced plans to conduct interoperability testing and over-the-air field trials based on 5G New Radio (NR) standards being developed based on specifications in 3GPP. The trials intend to drive the mobile ecosystem toward rapid validation and commercialization of 5G NR technologies at scale, enabling timely commercial network launches based on 3GPP Rel-15 standard compliant 5G NR infrastructure and devices.

The Broadband Forum announced that first steps have been taken to form a new industry connectivity and virtualization committee of global service providers which will resolve how connectivity and virtualization are bought and sold by service providers worldwide. Founded by the Forum's Service Provider Action Council (SPAC) – an international autonomous committee of service providers – the new steering group has been created with the initial purpose of creating the committee rules and developing an international open trading business framework to seamlessly deliver virtualized servers across the globe. This will accelerate the deployment of interoperating connectivity and cloud services, as well as reconcile the vertical market and system integrator interests to avoid the endless inefficiency of n-by-n integrations.

Sprint and TDD-LTE Networks unveiled High Performance User Equipment (HPUE) designed to optimize Sprint’s 2.5 GHz network coverage. HPUE helps provide better coverage and faster data speeds in more locations as next-generation technology continues to evolve. Sprint demonstrated the advanced new technology which is capable of extending its 2.5 GHz coverage by up to 30 percent to nearly match its mid-band 1.9 GHz spectrum performance, including indoors where an estimated 60 to 70 percent of wireless traffic is generated.

Collinear Networks and Lockheed Martin announced plans to commercialize a worldwide high-capacity wireless transmission technology for telecom network operators. The 2.5-year ongoing collaboration between the two companies is designed to advance Collinear’s plan to commercialize a worldwide high-capacity wireless transmission technology for telecommunications network operators.

Hughes Network Systems, LLC is set to usher in the next generation of satellite Internet service with the successful launch on December 18 of EchoStar XIX, the world's highest capacity broadband satellite. Designed with Hughes JUPITER™ System technology, EchoStar XIX is a multi-spot beam, Ka-band satellite which in its final orbit will power HughesNet® Gen5, the next generation of high-speed satellite Internet service, delivering more speed, data, and advanced features for consumers and small businesses with limited Internet access options.


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