Verizon Explores P2MP mmWave – A Bright but Not-so-New Idea

Emir Halilovic, Principal Analyst

Summary Bullets:

• Verizon recently announced that it has tested point-to-multipoint (P2MP) millimeter wave (mmWave) radio for providing broadband to multi-dwelling units (MDUs) in urban areas.

• The idea is good, but practical issues abound – a startup ISP Starry, which fielded a similar solution to lackluster response, is just emerging from Chapter 11 restructuring.

In its bid to make the process of expanding its broadband footprint more efficient, Verizon announced it has tested a new use case for its mmWave network in Texas (US). In the proof of concept, a centralized rooftop radio site (“donor” cell) was connected to a radio atop a simulated MDU with multiple endpoints requiring separate broadband connections. The signal was then transmitted via coaxial cable to a data processing unit equipped with a corresponding modem. The building’s existing wiring was used to transport the signal to end-user routers that provide broadband coverage to endpoint devices. Unlike “traditional” FWA, the solution uses a simplified broadband network gateway (BNG) instead of the company’s 4G and 5G core – Verizon claims this allows for “excellent” latency and capacity while reducing the load on the CSPs 4G and 5G mobile cores.

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