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The Old Way Isn’t Necessarily the Best Way

WINSTON, Ore. July 14, 2011 Seth Buechley

"Carriers focus on funding and solving their own wireless coverage issues," says Buechley. "So, to provide reliable coverage for multiple wireless service providers, building owners must court each carrier or abandon the goal and lock the venue into services offered by only one operator."

That’s where things start to get complicated. To achieve multi-carrier coverage, a site could have three or four parallel carrier deployments – known as a distributed antenna system (DAS) or in-building wireless network – that get maintained, accessed, and upgraded at different times. And that doesn’t suit the building owner.

"Building owners want a single system that handles multiple wireless services, public safety communication and, in many cases, private two-way radio," says Buechley. "They also want that system managed by an expert with experience monitoring and maintaining a multi-carrier DAS rather than a carrier that may be inexperienced with such tasks."

Single system platforms, commonly called multi-carrier, multi-operator or neutral host DAS, have existed for years to support multiple services. However, challenges remain because the interests of the carrier and building owner are not aligned.

The Inside Story

This raises thought-provoking questions. Who should be responsible to provide the DAS? Who should pay for it? Who should own it? And who should manage it?

Seth Buechley

Seth Buechley

RCR Wireless

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