Industry News

Charter plans rural broadband infrastructure expansion through fixed wireless technologies


Charter Communications is doubling down on broadband infrastructure expansion to shore up connectivity in rural areas and is currently conducting fixed wireless trials in the 3.5 GHz spectrum, according to a post on its policy blog.

Since 2014, Charter has spent more than $23 billion bringing broadband to “underserved and unserved communities.”

While the telecommunications giant is onboard with the rollout of 5G – it’s already testing the technology in several markets nationwide – it isn’t confident that 5G will be as effective in rural regions as it is in urban and suburban ones.

“For example, current 5G technologies are not able to cover the long distances required to deliver broadband in many rural areas – particularly in places with a lot of trees and foliage. And ‘small cell’ networks may not ever make sense in rural areas given the relatively low population density there,” read the post.

“Fixed wireless access technologies at lower frequencies” would offer more reliable connectivity, according to Charter.

To that end, the company called for the FCC to avoid favoring one technology over another and instead provide regulatory parity “to maintain and advance competition in the broadband marketplace.”



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