Why Choose LTE? An Explanation Even Your Investors Can Understand

By Patrick Leary, President, Baicells Technologies North America, Inc.,

Copyright © 2016 Baicells Technologies North America All Rights Reserved.
Sharing with attribution is approved.

Baicells Technologies is offering LTE at a value that blows away the
entrenched myths that LTE is too expensive for WISPs and other small
operators, such as small towns and cities or verticals like oil & gas that
might be interested in LTE for private networks. That’s well and good, and
we are proud of accomplishing this once thought impossible feat, but a fair
question remains: Why LTE at all? So we’d like to explain the impact of 2
simple issues you may not fully yet appreciate: NLOS challenges and the
benefits of a standard. We think once you do understand, the case for using
LTE as your primary wireless access method will be too compelling to ignore.

We hope you do not mind if we explain these things in as layman a way as
possible, so you can potentially use these explanations to your investors
and customers who might want to understand why you want to upgrade your
network to Baicells LTE solutions.

1. NLOS (Non-Line-of-Sight) Challenges
In the license-exempt and lightly-licensed fixed wireless broadband space,
operators must live with the modest power limits set by regulators. Whether
in the USA, Canada, are anywhere else, regulatory regions require wireless
technology in these frequency bands we are permitted to use to operate at
greatly reduced power relative to those operators like mobile carriers who
hold expensive licensed bands. The reasons for this go back many years, but
the crux of the issue is that these bands were never expected to support
commercial broadband plays, but rather were expected to be used by all the
common indoor and very close range wireless devices that have become
pervasive in our lives today, such as Wi-Fi, baby monitors, garage door
openers, etc. The exceptions include 3.x GHz bands, but even these are
granted very limited output power for fear of interfering with adjacent
license band licensees like satcom companies.

Despite this, technologists have been able to make lemonade out of lemons,
and now thousands of operators around the world are serving millions of
customers around the world – especially in rural areas where choices are few
– with community-saving high speed internet. But common technologies like
Wi-Fi and its proprietary derivatives can only do so much; Wi-Fi
capabilities are modest when it comes to outdoor obstructions like trees.
The result is that areas with lovely forests (and even a few trees in a
wireless path), while nice to live around have been impossible to service
with any kind of broadband speeds today’s streaming users demand.

You see (again, this will be remedial for some of you),
wireless signals weaken over distance – a process called “attenuation.” This
attenuation occurs in a step-like manner, where enough attenuation means the
signal drops to progressively lower and lower levels, with each level down
reducing the ability of the signal to deliver less and less speed
(megabits). These levels are called “modulations.” Top modulations might be
able to deliver 80 megabits or more, but by the time distance and trees
continue to attenuate the signal, one might be in a modulation that can only
deliver 1 or 2 Mbps, and eventually nothing at all. With trees in the way,
low power signals are both scattered (reflection) and absorbed by leaves,
modulating the signal down to useless levels. 

In the wireless business we categorize this sort of radio path obstruction
as a foliage-related non-line-of-sight problem (NLOS). Tree-based NLOS is
the primary reason keeping most WISPs from being able to connect a majority
of the customers in their footprint who want their service; it is a massive
business problem, not just a technical one. Those who can beat NLOS -- or at
least deal with it much more effectively -- win in the marketplace. 

In the wireless world we measure these signal levels in decibels (dB). The
way the science works, -3 dB attenuation (loss) means you’ve lost half your
power. Conversely, +3 dB (gain) means your power is double. And it’s
exponential, so a loss of 6 dB is catastrophic in terms of delivering
effective high speed internet. To use an analogy, imagine you are driving
down the interstate at 80 mph. If you lost half your power (3dB), you are
down to running at 40 mph. Lose another 3 dB (or 6 dB total) and now you are
down to 20 mph. So in the wireless world, we might say 80 mph is like 80 dB,
but 77 dB is like 40 mph and 74 dB is like 20 mph. That’s not going to get
you anywhere fast – and your competitor still driving 80 will crush you in
the market if your job is to delivers goods down the highway. And guess
what? Your job IS to deliver “goods” down the "highway" – broadband down the
information superhighway.

This is where LTE comes in. Unlike Wi-Fi, LTE was designed for outdoor
wireless, not indoor wireless local networks. As a more advanced technology
designed specifically for outdoors, LTE signals are able to hold higher
modulation levels in the face of more foliage. LTE also does a better job of
collecting all the various reflections off leaves and still making sense of
the signal. 

LTE does such a better job in fact that it holds about a 7 dB advantage over
Wi-Fi on a per modulation basis -- remember that's more than double and
double again. With that massive advantage it can easily cope with
foliage-based NLOS that will literally render competitive technologies
useless, unable to connect. Baicells LTE lets you deliver much higher speeds
to your NLOS-impacted customers where your competitors maybe can’t service
them at all. This means many more potential customers for every tower you

2. Standards
The NLOS benefits alone are enough to drive most fixed wireless operators
delivering broadband commercially to move to LTE if they deal with
foliage-based NLOS, but there is another reason why such users should care a
lot about LTE: standards. This is also a reason cities and towns, must care
about it.

We are all carrying LTE-enabled devices in our purses and pockets. LTE, in
just a few short years, has displaced all other old school mobile
technologies. When you see that “4G” icon appear on your smart phone, that’s
LTE. The mobile operators have invested billions to upgrade their networks
to LTE because it gives them much more speed at distances the old 3G methods
could deliver. 

But that’s not the only reason, the global drive for all mobile carriers to
use LTE for its technological advantages also means the entire globe is
unifying around a single standard, and with such mass comes economies of
scale that result in higher profits and lower costs. It results in more
vendor choices, preventing companies from the deadly risk of vendor lock
where one vendor holds an operator hostage at the mercy of one company’s
limited R&D and customer service. It results in massive continuing
investments by all parties to bring new services and build new devices. It’s
an explosion in innovation. Just consider the amount of Wi-Fi prompted
revolutionary innovations for what and how we can connect things inside just
over the space of ½ a generation. We can’t imagine living with it, just ask
your kids!

LTE is doing the same for outside and we are only at the beginning of the
LTE revolution. Those who get on board now with LTE will be able to take
advantage of untold new efficiencies, products, and services that emerge.
Over $1 billion is invested annually in LTE R&D, and being standard, every
new leap will be backward compatible with the last, just as Wi-Fi has been.
Imagine, no more forklift upgrades, or at least you’ll now control your pace
– no single vendor can put your entire CAPEX investment at risk of
obsolescence on a whim or by its failings in the marketplace.

This also translates into a network with higher equity value. Investors
understand the value of standards. Potential competitive buy out
opportunities become more plausible with your network being more attractive
because of an easier integration.

As well, new spectrum being opened by regulators in the U.S. called the
Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) band (3.55 GHz- 3.7 GHz) will enable
even the smallest operators to build their own private networks that can
have frequency protection similar to what mobile carriers now enjoy in their
licensed spectrum. This includes cities and towns. This is a huge deal
because today every city and every town has ever increasing OPEX budgets as
they pay the big mobile carriers monthly fees to connect an every-growing
list of devices in the communities, from traffic controllers, electronic
signs, cameras, plate readers, water plant control valves, and even parking
meters. This is part of the “Internet of things” (IoT) phenomenon within a
municipal sphere, and while it provides efficiencies and better
capabilities, it costs a lot of tax money to pay to connect these things.

The new CBRS band lets cities and towns and oil field operators, etc. the
ability to shed these onerous carrier contracts for the first time by
allowing them to build their own private, frequency-protected networks. No
more carrier contracts. No more ever-expanding monthly fees. Sure, cities
could have tried this using Wi-Fi, but that scheme was already tried and
failed miserably in the “muni Wi-Fi” boondoggles ten years ago. The band was
too shared and too unpredictable. It was also too expensive, requiring base
stations every block or so. Now Wi-Fi is back doing what it does best,
connecting things in our homes and allowing us to connect best-effort with
our smart phones without carrier charges as we drink coffee, shop, etc.

With the CBRS band, no longer will communities that want to connect outdoor
devices be at risk of connecting things with cluttered and noisy Wi-Fi
spectrum that is being shared by every home and person in town, causing
constant interference problems that negatively affects services, and makes
it unwise to use for critical operations.

What technology will dominate this space? LTE. LTE will be the pervasive
choice in CBRS because of its technical advantages outdoors, its vendor
flexibility, its growing set of devices, its backward compatibility, its low
cost. Those trying proprietary will find themselves with high cost and
limited choices – they would simply be trading one vendor dependency for

So friends, Baicells Technologies was created and is staffed by some of the
inventors of LTE with a visionary goal of not only making LTE as simple as
Wi-Fi, but to democratize the technology in a way that will re-define who
can be a carrier. We will bring LTE’s revolutionary NLOS benefits, its
economies of scale, and the flexibility of globally-adopted standards to you
at price points even the smallest operator – private or public – can afford.
Whether your customers are broadband subscribers, taxpayers, or internal
customers, the positive results will accrue quickly and progressively, both
in customer satisfaction and your bottom lines. Welcome to the Baicells
Technologies LTE future; it’s going to be amazing!



Best regards,





Patrick Leary

President, North America

M: +1.972.800.1157

Skype: pleary

WeChat: pajoly

"Like" us on Facebook  <https://www.facebook.com/BaiCells/>
https://www.facebook.com/BaiCells/ to see pictures and
test data from our Wave 2 trials!


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