Private Wireless Spectrum for Enterprises: What Can We Learn from Front Runners Germany and the United Kingdom?

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By Leo Gergs | 2Q 2020 | IN-5770


Early Numbers of Enterprise Spectrum Applications


Looking at discussions across different enterprise verticals, there is a ubiquitous interest in the deployment of private cellular networks. A recent survey conducted by ABI Research identified that 92% of manufacturing enterprises, for example, are currently investigating the use of private cellular networks (both 4G and 5G) on their factory floors.

In order facilitate private network deployment, Germany and the United Kingdom were among the first to enable enterprises to acquire mobile network spectrum, either by spectrum sharing (in the United Kingdom) or by setting aside licensed spectrum for enterprise usage (Germany), as both launched their initiatives in late 2019.

Early numbers of regulators Ofcom (the United Kingdom) and the Bundesnetzagentur (Germany) regarding applications show a somewhat timid approach: while Ofcom has awarded only one license for Shared Spectrum Access (and 10 more applications), the German Bundesnetzagentur has received 25 applications for spectrum on the 3.7 GHz band from enterprises. These numbers hint at a discrepancy between ini…

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