Asking for advice on this. Power cooperative has installed 3 fiber-fed Baicells APs on the same tower, offering 10mb, 25mb and 50mb packages. Those of you in similar situations, how are you competing, and with what equipment?
Here is my current setup (not Cambium currently): Airfiber5x backhaul to tower. 5 Airprism APs with Titanium sectors set to 120 degrees each on 20mhz channels. At the most, I have 15 subs on one AP. Others are less than that. Currently using 67/33/5ms on all.
Thoughts I am toying with -
- Adding another AP and narrowing antennas to 60 or 90 degrees.
- Increasing to 40mhz channels. (can this be done on either 2 or 3 channels with 6 radios?
- Going to each lower signal level customer and improving.
- Wait for a bit longer or try new AF PTMP units or EPMP 3000? Not wanting to do a complete forklift but that may be the only option....
- Limit each AP to less than 10 subs in order to keep bandwidth to each customer higher?
- Can I expect better performance with less equipment with EPMP 3000?
So first off I think it's foolish to offer 50mbps packages on Baicells ATM.... unless maybe they're using the newest 436Q AP's... which literally just started shipping, and even then there's a bunch of caveats. With the gear most people are using (release 9, single carrier AP's and CAT4 clients), in order to do 50mbps packages, you have to use a 3:1 frame ratio, which severely limits the uplink traffic... they'll only be able to sell a few of these 50mbps packages per AP, and the uplink will be limited to a a max of 2-3mbps before the AP is completely saturated. The situation gets even worse if they start installing nNLOS clients. My guess is that this power coop has no idea what they're doing and is completely new to the world of wireless. So to answer your question... I wouldn't worry at all :-)
Assuming that you have lots of 5GHz spectrum... you could offer 50 and even 100mbps packages using e3k's and 40 or 80MHz channel widths, and you'll be able to put far more of them on each AP then the coop. This is due to MU-MIMO and 256QAM, higher gain antennas, and sticking to LOS installations. You'll also have much better upload. Downside is poor nNLOS coverage compared to LTE... but frankly, you don't want to be installing these clients anyway... you want to keep all your client's RSSI's high in order to get the best modulation and overall AP performance.
With the recent release of ePMP firmware 4.4.1 we're now starting to see much more stable radios and now Cambium can do further fine tuning to squeeze out even more performance. It's a good time to deploy ePMP 3000 IMHO.