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New MNOs and industrial IoT soften the consolidation blow for vendors

There is more disruptive potential in ComReg’s decision to set aside a 3.5 GHz licence, in its recent 5G-oriented auction, for a new entrant. This was won by Dense Air, a subsidiary of vendor Airspan, whose model is to build neutral host, small cell networks, geared to locations or industries where it is hard to for multiple MNOs to justify the cost of build-out (for instance, railways, roads or large indoor/outdoor industrial complexes). Dense Air is a good example of a vendor extending its business model, as Nokia is doing with WING (see below), in a way that should drive adoption of its equipment and services, but also add new revenue streams. The significance lies in the decision to support…

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