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SCF and TIA address connectivity of smart cities

They hope to make smart communities a reality everywhere and drive advanced connectivity into every enterprise building

The two organisations want to drive advanced connectivity in smart communities
The two organisations want to drive advanced connectivity in smart communities

The Small Cell Forum (SCF), the telecoms organisation driving universal cellular coverage, and the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA), the leading association representing the manufacturers and suppliers of high-tech connectivity networks, are forming an alliance to address connectivity issues in smart communities and smart buildings.


The organisations have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to work on technical, commercial and regulatory solutions. They will share existing work and expertise and develop solutions that simplify and accelerate deployment of dense networks and in-building connectivity.


They hope that their efforts will help make smart communities a reality everywhere and drive advanced connectivity into every enterprise building.


“Every enterprise and community needs to be ‘smart’ to provide the best services and take advantage of the Internet of Things and other developing technologies,” said David Orloff, chair of SCF. “But this presents complex challenges which no one organisation can fully address.


"TIA and SCF share many of the same goals and we expect this alliance to lead to significant results, especially in advancing our drive towards 5G.”


Brenda Boehm, chief strategy officer of TIA added: “Industry collaboration is clearly needed to realise the full potential of smart communities, whether they take the form of buildings, campuses or entire cities.


“There are enormous opportunities to drive efficiencies, improve operational effectiveness, deliver faster and safer transportation, and more. Working together, we will be well positioned to accelerate the development and deployment of critical micro-wireless 5G technology in the community ecosystem.”


At SCF’s first-ever Partners’ Day, the two organisations discussed the priority areas where combined efforts can lead to meaningful progress. From that came several specific goals, including: simplified regulatory regimes, especially in cities; new approaches to enterprise deployment, including neutral host; common deployment frameworks that meet the needs of all stakeholders; and, new architectures, such as virtualisation, to enable flexible, efficient networks.


As part of its Transforming the Network strategic initiative, TIA previously identified smart communities and smart buildings as critical areas of focus. These dovetail with SCF’s two major programs for 2017: Hyperdense Networks – including a focus on smart cities; and, the Digitised Enterprise.


The common factor is that densification will bring high quality connectivity to every citizen and business, and enable a wide range of new services.


To drive progress in these areas, the partners will share technical and commercial solutions, identifying common ground and avoiding duplication. The organisations have also agreed to explore opportunities for technical collaboration, particularly in the following areas:


  • Process for efficient implementation of small cells across a campus or city;
  • In-building infrastructure and wiring for smart enterprises;
  • Creation of a smart building ‘blueprint’ that can be used across the real estate market.



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