MuLTEfire Alliance Will Arm Cablecos with a Wireless Technology that Complements Their Fixed Broadband Technology Leadership

Amid the impending breakdown of the structure of the RAN, and of its ownership and control, it is no surprise that the cable industry’s R&D arm, CableLabs, and the largest international cableco Liberty Global, have both joined the MuLTEfire Alliance.

“Wireless connectivity has become critically important for consumers,” said Balan Nair, CTO of Liberty Global, in a statement. “By joining the MulteFire Alliance, we are driving the future of wireless for our customers.”

“This step will arm the cable industry with a new wireless technology that builds on our success in providing Wi-Fi and mobile services and complements the industry’s fixed broadband technology leadership,” said Ralph Brown, CTO of CableLabs.

This LTE-in-5 GHz technology, devised by Qualcomm, looks set to be another hit for Qualcomm, giving it the kind of control and IPR position in a wireless networking technology on which its success has been built. However, by pushing an approach that does not require a licensed spectrum macro network as an anchor (as the other 5 GHz options, LTE-U and LTE-LAA, do), Qualcomm may be undermining its core customers and ushering new entrants, such as cablecos and of course Google, into the world of mobile services and multiplay.

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Feature image: a still from Qualcomm’s promotional MuLTEfire video.

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