DISH and FreedomFi to Pilot Community-Driven CBRS 5G Hotspot Network

DISH (NASDAQ: DISH) and FreedomFi, an open 5G networking company, will collaborate on a pilot program intended to provide DISH’s current and future wireless customers with access to what the companies claim is the world’s first community-driven, neutral host CBRS hotspot network. This collaboration extends DISH’s position that the next generation of wireless networks can be cloud-native open-source platforms, leveraging OpenRAN.

Open-source platforms enable innovation among developers to create novel apps and communications services, and to deliver these in shorter time-to-market cycles. DISH says that the collaboration with FreedomFi will help encourage individuals and communities to take part in their connectivity future.  

“As DISH deploys our own smart 5G network across the country, we seek partners who are innovative, regardless of whether they are one of the largest technology providers in the world or a startup with a disruptive idea, like FreedomFi,” said Chris Ergen, head of the Office of Innovation, DISH Wireless. “We are fully committed to our buildout and view this pilot as a valuable opportunity to further connectivity, innovation and openness. Our pilot program with FreedomFi leverages CBRS [3.5 GHz General Authorized Access] GAA spectrum, as well as the open-source Magma Core, which was developed with key contributions by Facebook Connectivity.”

“DISH is working with us to enable the use of CBRS [GAA] spectrum to pioneer an entirely new way to connect people and things,” said Joey Padden, CTO and co-founder, FreedomFi. “The CBRS-based 5G hotspots will be deployed by individuals, creating opportunities for users, partners, and the entire ecosystem.”

DISH and FreedomFi will also actively work on a bilateral roaming agreement. FreedomFi is an open 5G company that offers an efficient path toward open-source Private LTE or 5G networks. Whether for fixed wireless access, Enterprise wireless or mobile broadband, the company claims that users can plug any commodity small cell into a FreedomFi Gateway and start managing a private wireless network via a software-as-a-service (SaaS)-hosted portal.

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