HOW MULTI-CARRIER SMALL CELLS FIT INTO THE ENTERPRISE
By Sean Kinney, Managing Editor on JUNE 27, 2017
Most enterprises, regardless of size, can benefit from reliable, cellular in-building wireless connectivity. While Wi-Fi certainly has its place in enabling a multitude of enterprise applications, the capacity, latency and reliability of cellular provides a valuable complement, particularly given the increasing adoption of internet of things solutions to propel digital transformation initiatives. An outside-in approach to in-building connectivity often comes up lacking, meaning the signal source likely needs to be moved inside. Distributed antenna systems (DASs) can certainly solve for in-building wireless, but are very costly and require significant buy-in from carriers. Small cells are another option, but given the need to support multiple carriers in mobile-first, bring-your-own-device business environments, the current crop of equipment is somewhat limiting. That’s where multi-carrier small cells enter the picture.
In a recent report titled “Multi-Carrier Small Cell Solutions for In-Building Wireless,” Wireless 20/20 analysts Randall Schwartz and Berge Ayvazian write, “The critical question is which solutions can provide the multi-carrier capabilities needed for most venues at a cost point which can encourage a faster rate of deployment. While small cells can meet the cost-points required for in-building coverage, they have been challenged to provide coverage for more than one carrier at a time. But new virtualized small cell solutions have become available that can face the challenge of addressing the economic and multi-carrier requirements of the small and medium size venues.”
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