& cplSiteName &
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
User Rank: Lightning
4/12/2019 | 3:20:53 AM
Wi-Fi/5G convergence is really about the HOW
Mike - it's a good post. A few comments: Remember that what Boingo & Charter (and generally the carrier ecosystem) represents a very small percentage of the overall Wi-Fi industry. Sometimes folks forget that when talking about big names. Secondly: The question of Wi-Fi / 5G convergence is good one and we had the same qustion discussed (for endless years, it seems) on Wi-Fi / 3G / 4G convergence. Convergence seems to be something that won't go away, despite the fact that it has (thus far) been largely unsuccessful. I would say that convergence in general runs counter to how most markets develop - after all, most markets don't converge, they diverage (Wi-Fi btw is an excellent example how markets branch out and diverge). The companies that want convergence are mostly carriers or companies who make a living working with carriers (like Boingo).

Now, convergence is not undesirable. But it depends on HOW. The 'best' kind of convergence (the kind that will generally promote the Wi-Fi industry rather than break it down) is the kind where (most of if not all) of the convergence happens at the device-end by aggregation, multipath TCP, etc. This will make the user experience better (gapless) and (hopefully if done right) make use of all of the Wi-Fi already out there - and it will promote usaage and foster growth in Wi-Fi. The 'bad' kind of convergence (as I see it) is the kind that wants to take over the unlicensed bands with 5G (dejá vu, anyone?) or somehow try to force the Wi-Fi industry into being subservient to mobile (don't worry, that one won't happen).

Infrastructure mobile/Wi-Fi convergence (e.g. small cells with Wi-Fi APs or unlicensed mobile) has been largely unsuccessful. It's hard to see how it would be successful in 5G. 5G is not making anything easier - and they've got their work cut out for them getting the mobile part right first - that will take a number of years.

So the devil is in the detail. My best bet is that (thankfully!) device-side convergence is likely to happen also because it is the most efficient. 

Featured Video
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
September 17-19, 2019, Dallas, Texas
October 1-2, 2019, New Orleans, Louisiana
October 10, 2019, New York, New York
October 22, 2019, Los Angeles, CA
November 5, 2019, London, England
November 7, 2019, London, UK
December 3, 2019, New York, New York
December 3-5, 2019, Vienna, Austria
March 16-18, 2020, Embassy Suites, Denver, Colorado
May 18-20, 2020, Irving Convention Center, Dallas, TX
All Upcoming Live Events