Editor’s Note: RCR Wireless News goes all in for “Throwback Thursdays,” tapping into our archives to resuscitate the top headlines from the past. Fire up the time machine, put on the sepia-tinted shades, set the date for #TBT and enjoy the memories!

Rivada Networks loses FirstNet lawsuit
A federal judge ruled in favor of the First Responders Network Authority in a bidding dispute case brought by Rivada Mercury, a partnership formed specifically to bid on the FirstNet national public safety LTE network. Rivada Mercury promptly responded to the loss by saying it would take the battle to the states and try to win state-level contracts to build FirstNet-interoperable networks if those states opt out of the national build. Unless Rivada Mercury appeals the outcome of the lawsuit, FirstNet is free to move forward with its award of approximately $6.5 billion to deploy and run a nationwide LTE network for public safety use. In a statement, FirstNet CEO Mike Poth said, “We are pleased with the court’s decision. This is a positive development for FirstNet and the public safety community. FirstNet intends to move expeditiously to finalize the contract for the nationwide public safety broadband network.” A Rivada Mercury spokesman told RCR Wireless News via email that the company is examining its options for appeal and had no further comment at this time. Rivada Mercury is a partnership formed by Rivada Networks, Fujitsu, Nokia, Harris and Black & Veatch specifically to bid on the FirstNet contract, with a number of former Sprint executives high in its ranks. … Read more

3GPP pushes up non-standalone 5G standard timeline
Proponents of an accelerated standards timeline for a non-standalone “5G” specification were successful in getting the Third Generation Partnership Project to approve plans that could see standards-based mobile 5G services launched by the end of next year. During a recent plenary meeting in Croatia, 3GPP said it agreed to work towards the non-standalone 5G New Radio mode in support of mobile broadband services to be finalized by March 2018. The 5G standard will require an anchored LTE deployment with the 5G NR carriers used to boost throughput speeds and cut network latency. The accelerated timeline is also expected to see some standards components needed for the development of supporting chipsets released by the end of this year. As for a standalone 5G option, which would not require the need for an already deployed LTE network core, 3GPP said it remained committed to completing a standard by September 2018. The 5G-specific core is expected to include a greater use of software virtualization technologies like software-defined networking, network functions virtualization and network slicing. … Read more

A lack of 5G deployment diversity?

The mobile telecommunications space is currently inundated with hype surrounding “5G” technology, though according to a new survey the operators tasked with deploying those networks continue to see specific hurdles that still need to be surmounted before those plans can be realized. The survey and report, which was conducted in collaboration by the Telecommunications Industry Association and Tolaga Research, and sponsored by InterDigital, found that while 33% of operators questioned expected to offer commercial 5G services by 2020, operators were concerned over the lack of “diversity” in “5G network densification, disparate data offload strategies and uncertainties around backhaul technology.” Specific to those topics, the survey found operators had diverse plans when it comes to small cell-based network densification efforts, with 75% stating plans to partner with building owners, 64% partnering with electrical utilities and 61% with public lighting companies to deploy the necessary cellular nodes. The survey noted such a high focus on select few deployment models could impact overall plans. “Without broader partnership strategies, operators in many markets will struggle with their 5G network densification objectives … Read more

Dish raises a billion for NB-IoT
Dish Network is looking to generate $1 billion through a debt offering, which the satellite television provider and wireless spectrum holder said it might use for “spectrum-related strategic transactions.” The debt offering is in the form of 2.375% convertible notes due in 2024, which are set to be sold to a group of institutional investors. At maturation the notes will be valued at $82.22 per share, or a 32.5% premium over the company’s current stock price. Dish is currently involved in the Federal Communications Commission’s 600 MHz incentive auction proceedings, which depending on the outcome will see the company potentially add to its already established haul of spectrum resources. Dish has said it currently holds approximately 75 megahertz of nationwide spectrum – which it has yet to put to use for commercial wireless services – including spectrum in the 1.7/2.1 GHz band through the FCC’s AWS-3 and AWS-4 auctions, spectrum around the 2 GHz band from the H-Block auction and spectrum in the lower 700 MHz E-Block. Dish earlier this month filed documents with the FCC noting plans to meet build-out requirements for its AWS-4 and 700 MHz E-Block licenses through the deployment of a “5G” network in support of internet of things services. In the filing, Dish said it planned to meet a March 2020 deadline from the FCC for all of its spectrum licenses, with a focus on using narrowband-IoT technology. … Read more

Hong Kong lays out 5G spectrum roadmap
Hong Kong’s Communications Authority announced plans to open up new spectrum for “5G” services in the 26 GHz and 28 GHz bands in 2019, and in the 3.4 GHz to 3.7 GHz bands in 2020. CA said it will unleash 4.1 gigahertz of millimeter wave spectrum in the 26 GHz and 28 GHz bands, with the first batch of spectrum to support 5G services in Hong Kong. CA said it will invite industry players to express their interest in using the 26 GHz and 28 GHz bands for public mobile services before the end of 2017. The regulator said it will also launch a public consultation in the second half of the year on the 3.4 GHz to 3.7 GHz bands, which is currently assigned for fixed satellite services, with a view to re-allocating them for mobile services in 2020. In addition, CA is looking to assign spectrum in the 700 MHz band for mobile services following plans to turn off terrestrial analog TV services. … Read more

Huawei’s big plans for New Zealand investment
Huawei announced an investment plan to open a data center and research labs in New Zealand; founder and permanent CEO Ren Zhengfei made the announcement during a visit to the country. Huawei said it’s looking to work with local partners to build a cloud data center in New Zealand, is set to open an innovation lab at Victoria University of Wellington this year, and is on the hunt for research and development partners for opening a second lab in Christchurch. According to Chinese press reports, Huawei’s investment plan for New Zealand amounts to $282 million. Huawei said the labs will focus on big data, the internet of things and “5G” technologies. “New Zealand has rich tourism resources, and highly developed agricultural and trade sectors,” Zhengfei said, in a statement. “Digital transformation empowered by advanced [information and communication]technology can enable New Zealand to become better connected with the world and transform its traditional strengths into driving forces of economic growth.” … Read more

Check out the RCR Wireless News’ Archives for more stories from the past.

The post #TBT: 3GPP pushes up 5G standard; Dish raises a billion for NB-IoT … this week in 2017 appeared first on RCR Wireless News.