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The wireless alternative

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Broadband connectivity is more important than ever, and mmWave fixed wireless access (FWA) 5G technologies will play a crucial part in leveraging the economic potential inherent in this.

There can be little doubt that the increasing roll-out of fibre has benefited a lot of people, but this does not mean it has benefited those that need it most. The nature of these roll-outs has been to target the large metros and the high LSM regions, which has essentially led to the ‘haves’ being in a position where they have even more, while the ‘have nots’ find the digital divide has merely increased.

This is the exact opposite of the aim behind delivering greater broadband connectivity, suggests Justin Colyn, sales and marketing director at Comsol Networks. He adds, mobile broadband penetration, in the form of 3G, 4G and LTE, has by far the largest coverage and most subscribers, but at a premium and with services that are often inconsistent.

“While there is a place for all these different solutions, certain technologies are better depending on whether you are, for example, connecting a high-density urban area or a rural region – requiring a mobile or fixed solution. Bearing in mind that the cost of laying fibre is around 30% higher than it is to deploy a fixed wireless access (FWA) 5G network, this means that on a megabyte for megabyte comparison, 5G will be cheaper,” he says.

“Of course, fibre is very effective in high density areas and remains critical for 5G base stations’ last mile connectivity and in building the backbone on which 5G networks run. However, its cost to deploy is becoming prohibitive in respect of the smaller towns and more remote, less affluent market segments still available and needing good broadband connectivity.”

Despite this, broadband is more important than ever, with COVID-19 and the rise in online collaboration having accelerated the demand for connectivity underpinned by the need for value and quality. Colyn says he thinks that, thanks to this, SA is several years ahead of where it would otherwise have been.

Source: ITWeb. Read more at source.

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