Globalstar, Inc., a provider of mobile satellite voice and data services, announces its partnership with Nokia, using the latter company’s Digital Automation Cloud to provide private LTE & 4.9G solutions to orgs where spectrum is a necessity.
According to the companies, the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) sweeping across the African continent highlights the increasing need for solutions that are tailored for, and compatible with, the digital transformation journey of enterprises across many verticals.
“The need for high capacity, low latency and secure connectivity that is easy to deploy in multiple sites, and often across national borders, poses a real challenge. One of the key enablers is spectrum for local deployments combined with an appropriate automation platform,” according to a joint release.
Globalstar and Nokia’s solution allows enterprises to deploy intelligent network applications in a dedicated spectrum band. It is based on Nokia’s private wireless Digital Automation Cloud platform together with Globalstar’s 3GPP Band 53 spectrum.
“Providing private LTE/4.9G solutions to organizations and countries require spectrum, and this is where we come in,” says Barbee Ponder, Globalstar General Counsel and Vice President of Regulatory Affairs.
“We have globally-harmonized spectrum that we utilize for our Mobile Satellite Services (MSS), and we are currently obtaining administration-specific authorizations globally to provide terrestrial LTE services in this band – which happens to be a perfect fit for Nokia’s private LTE/4.9G offering.”
Both companies collaborated on the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) process to standardize this specific band of spectrum, which has been designated as Band 53. Their strategic alliance further expands the opportunities for both Globalstar and Nokia in terms of development, innovation and application across countries, industries, and use cases.
Nokia is already offering Band 53 access points and User End Devices (UED’s) such as modems, rugged handsets and tablets.
In its bid to develop a harmonized utilization of Band 53 for terrestrial private LTE/4.9G deployments across the African continent, Globalstar has secured rights from the authorities in South Africa, Mozambique, Gabon, Botswana, and Rwanda.
“In Africa alone, our terrestrial authorizations span more than 1.1 million square miles of territory, covering a population larger than 100 million people,” says Ponder. “We have obtained terrestrial LTE authority over our entire 16.5 MHz of S-band spectrum with permissible power limits for both macro and small cell deployments.”
The Globalstar MSS solutions provide complementary connectivity to end-user assets and employees when outside of the Nokia Digital Automation Cloud network in remote areas, such as mining installations, or oil, gas, and energy sites.
This 4IR/IoT partnership allows both companies to introduce digitalization solutions to the African market, that can be adapted for use across multiple industries. Band 53 enables the deployment of comprehensive solutions that can cover all operational requirements regardless of location.
As the partnership evolves, Globalstar and Nokia anticipate the expansion of their commercial relationship to create new opportunities for business, says the release.