Bringing Gigabit Connectivity Within Reach: Cambium Networks Pioneers Cost-Effective 6 GHz Solutions

By Bruce Collins

The recent approval of Cambium Networks’ ePMP 6 GHz platform in the United States and Canada marks a pivotal moment in the evolution of fixed wireless technology. This approval not only opens new opportunities for service providers to profitably grow their business but also brings several key technical advantages to the forefront of wireless broadband communication. Here, we explore the significance of the 6 GHz band in fixed wireless, emphasizing Cambium Networks’ approach to making it both high performance and cost effective.

Why 6 GHz Matters in Fixed Wireless

The 6 GHz band offers 850 MHz of unlicensed spectrum in the US and more in Canada, which is a substantial addition to the existing wireless landscape. With the ePMP platform, and soon the PMP 450v, this spectrum can leverage wide channels, up to 160 MHz, higher modulations, enabling the delivery of gigabit speeds to the edge of the network. Such capacity is crucial for meeting the increasing demand for high-speed internet, particularly in underserved and rural areas.

In many parts of North America, the 5 GHz spectrum has become congested and service providers’ existing towers have exhausted available channels. The new 6 GHz spectrum allows an overlay of new channels in the same geographies. With the less-congested 6 GHz spectrum, operators have the option to migrate existing customers to cleaner channels as well as add new subscribers where they were previously at maximum capacity. The return on investment with 6 GHz deployments will come with new subscribers, higher speed service offerings and ultimately lower churn and more satisfied customers.

Cambium Networks’ Affordable and Cost-Effective Approach

At Cambium Networks, we recognize that affordability and cost-effectiveness without sacrificing performance are critical for the widespread adoption of new technologies. Here’s how we ensure our 6 GHz solutions are accessible and economically viable:

  1. Scalability and Interference Mitigation: High modulations (up to 4096 QAM) and wide channels (40/80/160 MHz) enable high-speed packages. This scalability ensures that service providers can offer high-quality service without significant increases in operational costs.

    Just as important as the scalability of the technology is the financial viability of the solution. Service providers can cost-effectively deploy ePMP 4600 from large towers to hundreds of subscribers or to MicroPOPs with just a few subscribers, and everything in between.
  2. Efficient Use of Spectrum: The ePMP 4600 is based on the proven ePMP air interface with more than 4 million radios deployed globally during the past 10+ years. ePMP layers unique capabilities on top of the 802.11ax standard to optimize cost effectiveness and performance, specifically for WISPs. Features include the air fairness algorithm, TDD synchronization, SmartQoS, OFDMA, UL/DL MU-MIMO and frame optimization. These innovations enhance over-the-air efficiency and ensure optimal use of the available spectrum, reducing the need for additional infrastructure investments. In addition, Cambium’s QoE (Quality of Experience) software platform can be added to maximize customer satisfaction and minimize churn while deferring capital expenditures on backhaul.
  3. Automated Frequency Coordination (AFC): Our equipment includes built-in AFC, simplifying the process for service providers. The AFC ensures that our radios operate on channels that do not interfere with incumbent licensed microwave radio operators in 6 GHz. Cambium includes this service at no extra cost and takes care of all interfaces to the AFC, further reducing the total cost of ownership (TCO).
  4. Reusing Existing Infrastructure: The propagation characteristics of 6 GHz vs. 5 GHz are similar, allowing service providers to reuse existing tower infrastructure. This compatibility significantly lowers deployment costs and accelerates time-to-market for new services. With a very low capital investment, service providers can overlay any existing 5 GHz deployments (ePMP 3000, ePMP 4500, PMP 450, or even products from other suppliers) with 6 GHz. The ePMP 4500 provides an especially elegant migration from previous generations of ePMP. With the overlay in place, operators can move the highest data consumers and most critical business customers to the spectrum where they can get the best results without a complete rip and replace. By taking advantage of 6 GHz clean spectrum, they leave the higher link budgets of 5 GHz for those customers that need that additional range.
  5. Comprehensive Management Tools: Our solutions come with robust management tools such as cnMaestro for centralized cloud management and LINKPlanner or cnHeat for network planning. These tools streamline operations, reduce truck rolls, and improve the overall quality of service.

The Broader Impact of 6 GHz Deployment

Deploying 6 GHz fixed wireless technology has far-reaching implications. For one, it democratizes high-speed internet access, bringing gigabit services to remote and rural areas that have traditionally been underserved. This can drive economic growth, improve education and healthcare services, and enhance the quality of life for residents in these regions. In many environments, the rollout of these high-speed services can happen faster and be more cost effective than fiber.


Today, WISPs and enterprise network operators are beginning to deploy 6 GHz networks commercially. The proven economic scalability of the ePMP 6 GHz platform delivers fast return on investment and low ongoing TCO. Cambium Networks’ ePMP 6 GHz platform is more than just a technological milestone; it represents a significant step forward in making high-speed wireless internet accessible and affordable. Our commitment to cost-effective solutions, efficient spectrum utilization, and single-pane-of-glass management tools ensures that service providers can confidently expand their networks and deliver exceptional connectivity to their customers.

The ePMP 6 GHz platform is part of Cambium Networks ONE Network portfolio of solutions enabling service providers to profitably grow their business by selecting the right technology for the right job.

As we move forward, the 6 GHz band will play a crucial role in bridging the digital divide and driving the next generation of wireless communication. Cambium Networks is proud to be at the forefront of this transformation, providing the tools and technology necessary to build a connected future.

For more information on our 6 GHz solutions and to explore how you can benefit from this groundbreaking technology, visit our website or contact your local Cambium Networks representative.

Published May 15, 2024