Ahead of the Mobile World Congress 2018 (MWC 2018) in Barcelona, the Finnish telcom gear maker Nokia said that it is working with social media giant Facebook on 60 GHz fixed wireless access technologies to deliver gigabit services. The 60 GHz band allows high-speed broadband connectivity in urban or suburban areas, complementing existing fiber. Under this partnership, Nokia will combine its wireless passive optical network (WPON) with Facebook’s Terragraph technology to launch global gigabit broadband trials with select customers.
Nokia’s wireless passive optical network (WPON) technology provides a wireless gigabit drop to the home for broadband access networks. Facebook’s Terragraph technology is a 60 GHz, multi-node wireless system that delivers a low-cost solution for high-speed wireless access. Combining WPON with Terragraph’s mesh-routing and multi-hop capabilities allows broadband providers to wirelessly deliver gigabit services over wider areas with high reliability and meet growing demands for ultra-broadband access.
Nokia and Facebook will also work together on IEEE’s 802.11ay industry standard, leveraging Nokia’s Wireless PON and Terragraph’s TDMA scheduling capabilities. Nokia said that the goal is to create a strong platform and ecosystem for introducing 60GHz Terragraph-certified solutions to the marketplace, and deliver gigabit services to more people, sooner.
Nokia last year launched its Wireless PON (WPON) solution. It is based on 802.11ad WiGig technology and provides a wireless drop for fiber-to-the-home networks. Access points can be easily mounted on utility poles, street lights or a building facade, and deliver gigabit-per-second speeds to a self-installable WPON Home unit. By using the WPON solution rather than bringing fiber into every home, broadband providers can reduce up-front investment cost and deploy faster.
“Nokia and Facebook’s collaboration is a perfect example of combining two strong solutions to bring gigabit broadband to more people faster. While fiber is being pushed deeper and deeper, the physical connection to the home or apartment requires additional resources. Combining Nokia’s WPON solution with Facebook’s Terragraph 60 GHz technology, ensures the future-proofing of bandwidth while meeting competitive time-to-market and cost points,” said Julie Kunstler, Principal Analyst, Ovum’s Next-gen Infrastructure Practice.
“Terragraph is designed to help providers deploy fast and reliable connectivity for people in urban areas. Our partnership with Nokia will help advance Terragraph by building a robust, open ecosystem of interoperable commercial solutions based on 60GHz technologies,” said Yael Maguire, VP of Connectivity, Facebook.
“It is definitely exciting when two companies like Nokia and Facebook join their innovation strength to bring new technologies to market. Fixed-wireless access is gaining ground and perfectly complements our multi-technology mix to bring gigabit broadband to more people, sooner,” said Federico Guillén, president of Nokia Fixed Networks.