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Facebook’s fixed wireless technology heading to Penang via YTL

YTL has announced it will deploy Facebook’s Terragraph technology in Penang, the second deployment in the world, after Budapest, Hungary’s rollout last October.

Reported to be the first large-scale trial in Asia, the launch which is slated for 18 February, 2019 (today), is claimed to be able to achieve 1Gbps with a latency of under 1ms during YTL Communication’s internal Terragraph trial.

In the works since February 2018

Commsday had earlier reported in February last year, that Nokia was working with Facebook on a new fixed wireless technology that promises fibre-like performance over unlicensed 60MHz spectrum bands.

Nokia CEO Rajeev Suri described it as “…essentially creating a giant meshed network with access points hanging on utility poles, streetlights or building facades.. this gives operators a cheaper faster way of bringing gigabit services to remote areas or areas where fibre is not available.”

“Terragraph is designed to help providers deploy fast and reliable connectivity for people in urban areas,” said Facebook connectivity VP Yael Maguire.

Slight switch

It was also in February, that another media reported from Barcelona, Budapest and Kuala Lumpur would be the first two cities in the world to deploy Terragraph technology.

Norwegian telco MNC, Telenor, was supposed to have been working with Facebook to conduct the Terragraph trial in KL.

Fast forward a year later and it’s YTL Communications’ CEO, Wing K Lee who makes the announcement about the trial instead.

Ready for prime time?

Commsday reported last October that Facbook’s millimeter-wave wireless technology is now supporting fixed wireless access connectivity in Hungary.

The trial by Magyar Telekom, Deutsche Telekom’s Hungarian subsidiary, is now delivering fibre-like speeds to users, according to Facebook connectivity ecosystem programs director Aaron Bernstein. In his blog post, Deutsche Telekom has gone so far as to issue an official request for information for 60GHz fixed wireless solutions to provide gigabit connectivity.

But besides fixed wireless access, Commsday reported Terragaph being trialled as a backhaul technology for traditional WiFi hotspots in Indonesia, by XL Axiata.

“With XL Axiata in Indonesia, we were able to demonstrate Terragraph’s ability to provide backhaul connectivity to Wi-Fi access points serving more than 1,000 people during the Asian Games,” Bernstein said, while also highlighting growing support for Terragraph from key chipset and solutions vendors like Intel, Qualcomm and Radwin.

Nokia is also building Terragraph-certified products with Facebook.




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