EVOLVE’s Shawn Chang’s Statement on the Wi-Fi Alliance’s LTE-U Coexistence Test Workshop

August 4, 2016

Yesterday’s WFA LTE-U Coexistence Test Workshop was a tremendous missed opportunity.  Over the past year, the Wi-Fi community and EVOLVE members have collaborated to forge consensus and develop a coexistence test plan for LTE-U and Wi-Fi.  Unfortunately, the Wi-Fi Alliance has buckled under political pressure from the cable lobby and proposed a one-sided plan that is fundamentally unfair to new technologies.  We strongly believe that technologies operating in unlicensed bands need to coexist with one another.  But the plan put forward yesterday is manifestly biased and not based on sound engineering.  The cable industry claims that the draft plan is based on a consensus and is a compromise.  It is neither.  In fact, it wholly ignores technical data submitted by the Wi-Fi community and rejects out of hand a compromise proposal by the LTE-U community made just last week.  After dragging their feet through months of needless delay, yesterday’s workshop continues a troubling pattern by the Wi-Fi Alliance and the cable lobby of choosing self-interests over consumers’ interests.  And their efforts to block innovation and new technologies risk finding common ground on vitally important areas of spectrum sharing.  These actions extend far beyond LTE-U and jeopardize progress in the 5.9 and 5.3-5.4 GHz bands, as well as the development of new technologies for 5G, Citizen Broadband Radio, and the 802.11 ax standard itself.  While yesterday’s workshop is yet another roadblock for tomorrow’s technologies, EVOLVE and its members remain committed to providing consumers with new and innovative mobile broadband solutions today and well into the future.