Rivada Networks looks to tap new technology to bolster FirstNet – Carrier Wrap Episode 35


    Rivada Networks looks to its dynamic spectrum market technology in boosting FirstNet deployment and operation plans

    The federal government has for nearly 15 years attempted to put together the assets needed to build out a nationwide public safety network designed to serve the needs of the first responder community. The effort was birthed in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, which highlighted the inability for deployed public safety networks to handle a true crisis situation.
    Initial efforts began with the 700 MHz spectrum auction in 2008, in which the Federal Communications Commission set aside 20 megahertz of spectrum to be used through a partnership with auction bidders. Unfortunately, the license did not receive a bid meeting its set reserve price, forcing the FCC to rethink its plans.
    That rethink led to the formation of the First Responder Network Authority, which was provided with the 700 MHz D-Block license and more than $6 billion in funding from the FCC’s AWS-3 spectrum auction to entice firms into a new partnership. This effort has drawn interest from a number of established carriers, including Verizon Wireless and AT&T, as well as new entities.
    One of those entities is Rivada Networks, which boasts a telecom veteran-heavy management team recently bolstered by the addition of former Sprint CFO Joe Euteneuer who is co-running the show with executive chairman and co-CEO Declan Ganley.
    Rivada last month unveiled vendor partners lined up to help the company in its efforts to build out a nationwide public safety network should it win a part or all of the FirstNet bidding process. Rivada said partners include Harris Corporation, Ericsson, Nokia, Intel Security, Fujitsu Network Communications and Black & Veatch.
    The companies plan to pool their resources behind Rivada as it bids in the ongoing FirstNet process that is to culminate with the building of a nationwide public safety network using 20 megahertz of spectrum in the 700 MHz band. While not named, Rivada is also said to be working with a nationwide wireless operator already running an LTE network as well as a number of regional telecom operators.
    Rivada said it will subsidize the cost of building the nationwide LTE network and use existing partner infrastructure to speed deployment and reduce costs. Rivada had previously touted its dynamic spectrum arbitrage tiered priority access technology, which it claims ensures priority network access for public safety agencies over commercial wireless services provided by FirstNet’s planned network partners.
    On this week’s Carrier Wrap, we spoke with Ganley to get insight into the firm’s technology plans and how it views its position in supporting the FirstNet initiative.
    Make sure to check us out again next week when we speak with Global Wireless Solutions about network performance testing challenges.
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