Fixed wireless access connection focused on VR use case

Enhanced mobile broadband is one of the three primary 5G New Radio use cases. Based on operator trials, fixed wireless access is emerging as the early delivery vehicle of eMBB, which does two things: saves operators the time and expense of laying fiber to individual homes and premises, while also delivering an improved customer experience.

Most 5G fixed wireless access trials have involved high-band millimeter wave frequencies. In Finland, operator Elisa worked with compatriot vendor Nokia to test fixed wireless access, although the two companies did not disclose the frequencies used.

The trial set up was described as a base station located on a mast and connected back to the network via fiber. The two companies tested a virtual reality application wherein a users wearing a headset watched VR footage of metal band Amorphis, known for albums including Skyforger and Under the Red Cloud. The two companies claimed the test marked a first in the Nordic countries.

Matias Castrén said fixed wireless access “will provide an alternative to other fixed high-speed and high-quality fixed broadband connections in the future with wider coverage and in larger areas.”

Elisa has worked with Nokia on a number of network upgrades and 5G-related testing. In Finland, operator Elisa says it has established a true gigabit LTE network. Now it’s a matter of waiting for mobile devices to catch up to the network technology, which reps for the carrier expect next year. The early network rollout is focused in Tampere and near an Elisa facility in Helsinki.

Similarly Nokia and Elisa in April completed a test of 5G technology using the 3.5 GHz spectrum band that hit peak data speeds of 1.5 gigabits per second and showed latency as low as 1.5 milliseconds. Results from the tests, which were conducted in Rusko, Finland, were compared favorably to current commercial LTE networks, with the companies stating “the test results were very encouraging.” It was noted the test was the first of its kind in Europe.

Tommi Uitto, Nokia SVP, Mobile Networks said the fixed wireless demonstration marks “another stride forward in our 5G collaboration with Elisa and further bolster[s]Finland’s position at the forefront of next generation networks.”

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