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Open up your private wireless network today with MulteFire

Exclusive Moor Insights podcast explains how Multefire is creating and supporting new opportunities for private wireless networks, far beyond the capabilities of WiFi.

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Open up your private wireless network today with MulteFire

Will Townsend, Principal Analyst for Networking and Security at Moor Insights & Strategy, will talk with Nokia’s Tristan Barraud de Lagerie, Head of Private Wireless Marketing, about the benefits of Multefire for private wireless networks and how Nokia is unlocking global unlicensed spectrum with an industry-first 4.9G LTE private wireless network solution.

Key points:

  • The critical role of Multefire when spectrum is limited, or LTE licensing issues arise
  • The benefits of Multefire and why it is much more than ‘enhanced WiFi’
  • How Nokia is leading the charge with industry’s first certified MulteFire user equipment

Tristan Barraud de Lagerie
Head of Private Wireless Marketing

Podcast at a glance

How is MulteFire creating and supporting opportunities in private wireless?

Nokia, along with Qualcomm, created the MulteFire Alliance in 2015. Its purpose was to create a global ecosystem for the deployment of 4G LTE in configurations that used unlicensed spectrums, and to create MulteFire specifications. 

In the years since, these specifications have been embedded into the 3GPP standards. One example is the additive Listen Before Talk, known as LBT, which helps to ensure smart co-existence with local WiFi networks.

Industries have realised they need cellular connectivity, particularly LTE or 5G, to digitalize operations and activate new use cases. As a result, private wireless networks are now deployed across the world.

However, occasionally deployment faces a bottleneck in the form of spectrum. In some countries, there is limited LTE spectrum; in the UK, for instance, there is less than 20MHz of spectrum bandwidth available for industries, which need a lot of capacity for data-hungry applications such as video surveillance.

Some nations lack a coherent policy in terms of LTE license allocations for industrial sites. They are often too expensive, or not yet adapted to the context. There is also an increasing demand for temporary LTE cellular networks for events, field hospitals or even construction sites.

MulteFire delivers a solution to all these problems. It has 450MHz of bandwidth in the 5GHz frequency band, comes with zero cost, is easy to access and is available in most countries. In the context of the scarcity of spectrum, MulteFire is a gold mine.

How is MulteFire different from WiFi?

MulteFire is unlicensed, and it leverages some of WiFi’s spectrum bands. It is, however, far more than simply “WiFi on steroids”. There are some critical advantages to MulteFire, particularly in the context of Industry 4.0.

  1. Coverage: Industrial sites are complex, with walls and panels and plenty of metal, which means radio planning can be a nightmare. MulteFire leverages the capability of 3GPP LTE 4G features, which means one of its access points can deliver the same coverage as more than four WiFi access points. This makes it a far more compelling deployment than WiFi.
  2. Mobility: This is vital for many industrial applications, such as autonomous mobile robots. They move around a site, which means network connectivity must be always on, everywhere. WiFi does not support handovers between access points, so it cannot support this type of business-critical use case, whereas MulteFire can.
  3. Security: MulteFire is a 3GPP technology with SIM authentication and end-to-end encryption, which makes it superior to WiFi in an age of increasingly sophisticated cyber attacks.

Nokia’s MulteFire modem is blazing a trail

Nokia recently announced industry’s first certified MulteFire user equipment, the MulteFire modem. This is a field router that connects to assets such as sensors and machines via USB or Ethernet and enables them to connect to a private wireless network using MulteFire-certified access points.

We use the same architecture and core network as our private wireless network, the Nokia Digital Automation Cloud (NDAC).

The combination of MulteFire, where no spectrum authorization is needed, and NDAC makes it simple for anyone to deploy a private network anywhere in the world.

Nokia is recognized by major industry analysts as the leader in this field. We have several hundred customers and are adding dozens more every quarter. Our expertise and experience in the various sectors, regions and countries sets Nokia apart.

While LTE licenses can be a barrier in some countries, with MulteFire it is possible to deliver connectivity in any country in the world. This new innovation will drive the MulteFire ecosystem via the MulteFire Alliance.

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Nokia Private Wireless Podcast audio library

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