A study earlier this year from the RVA/Fiber Broadband Association reported that only 45 percent of homes passed by fiber-optic cables in the U.S. are being connected, but a Swedish company is looking to a new technology that could pave the way for easier connections to homes and apartment complexes being passed.
In a recent article
on their website, InCoax Networks said 5G mmWave Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) Extension technology can be a game changer and allow homes and multi-dwelling units (MDU’s) previously passed by networks to be revalued and proven profitable.
The company said cost-effectively accessing apartments with new cables has been a major factor contributing to the continued digital divide, with deployment costs running too high for many building owners and tenants to accept.
Helge Tiainen, Head of Business Development, Marketing & Sales at InCoax Networks, said multiple technologies need to be considered to reach global targets for digital inclusion.
“A considerable obstacle for network operator roll-out plans has been the effective delivery of reliable gigabit or multigigabit speeds for brownfield MDU’s,” he said. “This is driving the growth of fiber access and 5G mmWave FWA technologies, particularly when it is deemed that laying fiber to the home or Ethernet cabling from the rooftop is not cost-effective.”
Tiainen called on others in the industry to contribute to Broadband Forum’s “Fixed Wireless Access Extension” project that will help connect MDU’s with 5G FWA.
According to InCoax Networks, the project is focused on reaching apartments within MDU’s by repurposing existing property infrastructure, such as coaxial cabling, to extend the FWA connectivity. They said coverage in MDU’s can often be uncertain due to attenuation of 5G signals, which sometimes has struggle penetrating multiple walls in an MDU.
“That is why 5G FWA Extension technology that leverages existing property infrastructure should be a no brainer for network operators,” Tiainen said. “They will have a faster return on investment as DSL customers can be turned to 5G FWA subscribers, and additional costs for re-cabling property infrastructure is prevented thanks to InCoax’s technology.”