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Leading Lights 2016 Finalists: Most Innovative Wireless Service (3G, 4G, Carrier WiFi)

Dan Jones
5/22/2016
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5G may be be creating most of the hype about future wireless services right now, but operators and vendors are still squeezing innovation out of 4G and WiFi networks, as this Leading Lights category shows.

We looked at options ranging from WiFi on buses in Singapore, smooth hand-offs to 802.11 in the US, and using fronthaul to increase 4G capacity in Hong Kong.

The winner of the category -- along with all the rest -- will be announced at the Leading Lights Awards dinner on Monday, May 23, at the Hotel Ella in Austin, Texas. The following day, the Big Communications Event 2016 opens its doors for two days of networking, drinking and learning.

To find out which companies were shortlisted in all 26 Leading Lights categories, see Leading Lights 2016: The Finalists.

Hutchison Global Communications – Mobile Fronthaul Network
Hutchison Global Communications Ltd. (HGC) has been exploiting its extensive fiber holdings in Hong Kong to power up its 4G network on the island. The operator is using its fiber to distribute more remote radioheads that will increase the speed and capacity of its 4G network.

Operators need fiber to deploy this kind of mobile edge computing system. The basestation controller can control multiple radios but needs fiber to communicate fast enough for synchronized communications. HGC is using the Infinera Corp. (Nasdaq: INFN) TM-Series Mobile Fronthaul Solution to implement this RAN performance boost in Hong Kong.

M1 & Parallel Wireless – WiFi On-The-Go HetNet
The service provides passengers with seamless high-throughput WiFi on buses in Singapore. The selling point compared to many public transit WiFi systems is a handoff between the cellular network to the 802.11 system on the bus, without the need for complex logins.

The system uses an LTE small cell for WiFi backhaul on the bus from Parallel Wireless Inc. The combo unit, which handles WiFi, LTE and backhaul, is the size of a shoebox.

Boingo Wireless – Sprint's Carrier WiFi Roaming, Powered by Boingo
Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) has tapped Boingo Wireless Inc. for a WiFi roaming service aimed at getting its customers easily connected to WiFi at major airports in the US.

Sprint's Carrier WiFi Roaming and Offload uses Passpoint wireless standards to make automatic authentication as simple as possible on Boingo's WiFi networks at airports in Chicago, JFK and LAX.

Some 35 airports are supported in total. More than 22 million Sprint customers with Android and iOS devices can access the roaming service.

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

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