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In Search of the Killer 5G App

AT&T and Comcast recently joined forces and joined the 5G Open Innovation Lab. This is a venture that has been funding start-ups and others working in 5G research. Along with looking to improve 5G edge technology, a primary goal of the OAI Lab is to search for killer apps for 5G. The two big companies join the other founding members of the effort, which includes Dell, Intel, Microsoft, Deloitte, and Nokia. more

Will Telesat Survive?

In 2017, Telesat, an established Canadian geostationary satellite operator, announced a planned low-Earth orbit Internet service constellation. The plan called for 117 satellites with inter-satellite laser links in a mix of inclined and polar orbits, enabling global coverage. more

Google Bard Fails to Answer Satellite Internet Questions

In an earlier post, I asked whether electronically steered antennas (ESAs) would replace parabolic antennas in satellite ground stations. I did some research and concluded that it is likely that they will. Next, I discussed the same question with ChatGPT and, while it made several false statements, it made a relevant point that I had overlooked. The relevant addition was positive, but the errors were troublesome, so I decided to try ChatGPT's competitor Google Bard. more

Using 42 GHz Spectrum for Broadband

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission circulated draft rules to govern the lower 42 GHz spectrum (between 42-42.5 GHz). This is within the range of spectrum referred to as millimeter wave spectrum. This is one of the more unusual FCC spectrum deliberations because this spectrum is totally empty -- there is nobody currently authorized by the FCC to use the spectrum band. The FCC is starting this deliberation with a clean slate. more

Will Electronically Steered Antennas Replace Parabolic Antennas in Satellite Ground Stations? (ChatGPT-Assisted Version)

In a previous post, I asked whether electronically steered antennas (ESAs) would replace parabolic antennas in satellite ground stations. I read a few articles suggested by others and by Google search, used some common sense, produced a list of advantages of ESAs, and concluded that it was likely they would eventually replace parabolic antennas for many applications. more

Will Electronically Steered Antennas Replace Parabolic Antennas in Satellite Ground Stations?

Three recent developments make me wonder whether we are on the cusp of a shift in satellite ground station technology from parabolic to electronically steered antennas (ESAs). The U.S. Space Force operates the Satellite Control Network, with 19 parabolic antennas at seven locations around the world. more

Are You Ready for WiFi 7?

It wasn't that long ago that we saw a major update to WiFi standards with the release of WiFi 6 in 2019 and WiFi 6E in 2020. But we're on the verge of the next generation of WiFi with the official launch of the new WiFi 7 standard in November 2022. There has already been a soft release of WiFi 7 routers in China, and we'll start seeing the new routers in the market here sometime this year. more

FCC Touts 6G

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has seemingly joined forces with the marketing arm of the cellular industry in declaring that the spectrum between 7-16 GHz is now considered to be 6G. Chairman Jessica Rosenworcel recently announced that the agency would soon begin looking at the uses for this spectrum for mobile broadband.  more

Starlink’s New Business Broadband

Starlink has quietly updated its business broadband offerings. The original plan for businesses was $500 per month with a two-terabyte data cap. If a customer exceeded the data cap, the speed reduced to 1 Mbps for the remainder of the month unless a customer bought additional broadband at $1 per gigabyte. Starlink business comes with a premium antenna from HP at a one-time cost of $2,500. more

China and Taiwan Recognize Starlink’s Military Value

When Russia invaded Ukraine, SpaceX had around 2,000 satellites in orbit. It was clear from the first day of the war that a low-Earth orbit (LEO) constellation of around 2,000 satellites would be a valuable military and civilian asset. The first truckload of Starlink terminals arrived in Ukraine on February 28, 2022, four days after the invasion. By March 19, there were 5,000 terminals in Ukraine and 150,000 active daily users by May 2nd.China and Taiwan have both seen the strategic value of 2,000 Starlink satellites. more