Mexico seeks bids for nationwide 700 MHz wholesale LTE network to serve competitive market, public safety

Add Mexico to the list of countries that soon could leverage LTE technology to meet the communication needs of its public-safety entities, although first responders are just one of many groups to be served under the new Red Compartida tender for a wholesale LTE network operated on 90 MHz of spectrum in the 700 MHz band.

Mexico’s Secretariat of Communications and Transportation announced the Red Compartida bidding process on Jan. 29, but the rules governing the process were released only in Spanish at the time. An English version of the rules was released yesterday.

According to the Red Compartida rules, Mexico is seeking bids from entities willing to build a nationwide LTE network, the capacity of which would be auctioned to the highest bidder in a competitive marketplace on a regular basis. The wholesale initiative is design to create a competitive consumer wireless market within Mexico, but the rules clearly contemplate the opportunity to serve public safety and other critical-infrastructure user groups.

“The Red Compartida shall be a platform that provides latest-generation mobile services to its Clients, some of which could focus on specialized vertical markets such as public safety, civil protection, health and transportation services, among others,” the English translation of Mexico’s bid document states. “For such purposes, it should consider the possible incorporation of facilities and functionalities of service quality and dynamic traffic prioritization, in order to attend to the needs required by such services.”

Rivada Networks CEO Declan Ganley said that Mexico’s wholesale buildout and open-access market structure is “right up our alley,” as the model fits his company’s dynamic spectrum arbitrage technology and business model. Rivada Networks intends to bid for Red Compartida, as well as the public-safety-oriented FirstNet request for proposal (RFP) in the U.S., the RFP recently released by the state of New Hampshire and other LTE initiatives around the world that may overlap.

“There is a public-safety requirement in there,” Ganley said during an interview with IWCE’s Urgent Communications. “It’s not public-safety led, like FirstNet, but there is a public-safety requirement. So, bidders can include dynamic capability for public safety—ruthless preemption, etc., which we obviously intend to include—and to run an open-access marketplace for the bandwidth on a wholesale basis.

“We see some really powerful synergies between what Mexico is doing and what FirstNet is doing, especially now that this public-safety piece is included in the Mexican RFP.”

Article via UrgentComm

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