Telenor calls enterprise in-building wireless a “top priority”

The middleprise is currently the white whale of the in-building wireless vendor market. Declining carrier spend puts the capex impetus onto venue owners who know they need in-building wireless, but might not be fully aware of the associated technologies and business cases. This puts it on equipment to take total cost of ownership and complexity out of products to make it easier for either operator or enterprise decision-makers to invest.

And, while the carrier spend on in-building is in a waning cycle, there’s still dollars available to provide solutions that boost indoor cellular performance. Case in point: Telenor Norway is working with San Diego-based Nextivity in a move that targets enterprise customers.

Nextivity is providing its active DAS hybrid Cel-Fi QUATRA solution that supports multiple carriers over Cat5 Ethernet and is approved for use with many carrier networks. The company has upwards of 200 global operator partners.

In Norway, Telenor Head of Mobile Products, Business Markets Bjørn Lydersen said enterprise in-building is a “top priority. Building materials such as concrete, metal siding and low energy glass can impair cellular signals, so we needed a robust solution…that effectively addresses these challenges provides better indoor coverage for both voice and data, without any risk of interference on our network.”

That last bit is important. Unlike many repeater-type solutions that amplify an operator’s signal then broadcast it in-building, Nextivity gets its tech approved by the carriers for use on the network, which proactively addresses any interference-related issues.

Nextivity has worked since 2015 with Telenor to provide coverage for buildings less than 15,000-square-feet.

In a January interview with RCR Wireless News, Joe Schmelzer, senior director of products with Nextivity, said Cel-Fi QUATRA was initially envisioned as “our 50,000-, 100,000-square-foot unit play. One customer put in 14 systems in one building just because it’s easier and cheaper and better. That was a totally unexpected use case but now it’s happening everyday.”

He continued: “We combine that easy stuff with the technology prowess and the technology power of our digital architecture and our ability to essentially distribute coverage over Ethernet. With Quatra we can deliver a fully installed system for a 50,000-square-foot building for $10,000.” Competitive solutions are up to 10-times more expensive, he said.

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