IoT Blog

The [R]evolution of Private Cellular Networks

AirLink, Routers, Private Networks

Grant Kyle

Grant Kyle

Director, Strategic Partnerships

The roots of technology have always been a measure of the problems you are attempting to solve.

For instance, the need for people to have basic computing capabilities in every home was a huge leap in changing the way society thought about computers.

Fast forward and connect those personal computers to the internet and now you have a “connected” global society that can communicate with the click of a mouse from the comfort of home (albeit with the annoying chatter of those first dial up modems that sounded like a wounded droid from Star Wars).

Fast forward again, and now internet is the norm with the mass adoption of a micro-private network called Wi-Fi. In parallel, you also had a trusty cellular flip phone so you would never again miss those important business or mission critical calls … you are a mobile and connected technology pioneer … if there is a network.

However, wireless networks come with their own set of challenges:

  • What if the network isn’t working?
  • What if there is no network coverage?
  • What if you have coverage but the network is congested?

Mighty inconvenient if you are getting an updated grocery shopping list , life changing if connectivity is mission and business critical!

Fast forward again to 2023. We are watching the rise of artificial intelligence, edge computing and robotics. Being wirelessly connected is now a norm for humanity. We have devices with us in our pockets, on our desks, embedded in our vehicles. We seamlessly use this technology for shopping, working, playing and operating business and government infrastructures. We are dependent on being connected. Wireless connectivity drives the [R]evolution, and people continue to push technology to solve for “X.”

Private Networks – A New Frontier

Which brings me to the topic of private networks, and why is there so much attention on who, what, where and when private networks are relevant. Let’s take a look at the roots and the advancement of what and where private networks are today.

Private cellular networks are a type of cellular network that is owned, operated, and managed by a single entity. These networks are typically used by larger enterprises such as factories, utilities, or smart cities, as well as governmental agencies. Private cellular networks can be used to provide dedicated coverage to a specific geographic location, or they can be deployed in a larger area such as a city or county.

The days and nights of proving the value of private networks are over. Private networks have emerged as the bedrock of secure efficient and scalable connectivity. The advantages of private networks are undeniable: reduced latency, improved network management and in today’s high threat landscape – enhanced and highly secure data protection.

When Private Networks Make Sense

There are a few advantages to using private cellular networks over public ones. The first is that the entity that owns the network has complete control over its coverage area and can customize it to their needs. Private networks are also a great way to address the growing demand for increased capacity of mobile networks and lower latency.

There is little doubt that private networks are mature and ready for deployment. The age of discovery has passed since the early days of LTE CBRS band 48. We saw LTE CBRS adoption and deployments during COVID that closed the digital divide, provided connectivity for “pop-up” healthcare facilities, and filled gaps - not to replace Wi-Fi - but to extend the reach of Wi-Fi using LTE Private Spectrum instead of the traditional cumbersome fiber backhaul.

Today, true 5G Stand Alone (SA) Private Networks are the reality. Humanity’s expansion of tech requiring secure, high speed, low latency untethered connectivity is in high demand. Sierra Wireless has been quietly listening and engaging. We built modules and IoT for the industry supporting the early private network pioneers. We have been deeply ingrained in supporting this [R]evolution. Our customers have spoken, and we have listened.

Enabling the [R]evolution

Our customers’ requirements are clear – they need dependable, comprehensive and easy-to-implement solutions.

Our private cellular solutions seamlessly integrate with a wide range of private network partners. We've collaborated with leading OEMs and system integrators such as Amdocs and Athonet to streamline the deployment, orchestration, management, and procurement process of our private networks. Through our top-tier channel partners, we now offer customers a complete solution that reduces the complexity of designing, deploying, managing and servicing a private cellular network. Our pedigree is business and mission critical communications.

Our industrial-grade ruggedized routing solutions offer multi-network connectivity as part of our DNA. Contact us today to start your private network [R]evolution and find out how our private network solutions can help you transform your communications.

Mobile World Congress Las Vegas 2023 will be the epicenter of discussions surrounding the transformative power of private networks. Let’s connect, share insights, and chart the course for a more connected and secure world.

We’ll see you at MWC 2023!

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