Citizen’s Band Returns? What is CBRS?

Breaker 1-9, got your ears on?

No, the good old CB radios of Smokey and The Bandit fame are not coming back in vogue. CBRS stands for Citizens Band Radio Service and it is expected to launch in late 2018.

Operators will be able to use part of the 3.5GHz spectrum (3550-3700GHz) without paying for it. However, they’ll have to pay for the software which assigns the frequency bands and prevents interference.

This technology will be used to offload the busiest parts of the network, usually in core urban areas, by shifting traffic from congested spectrum to the CBRS band. To have a meaningful impact, it will require new devices that are operate in this band as well as new base stations.

The word is that the base stations will still be pole mounted like traditional outdoor small cells but even smaller, and could include the BBU, but likely wouldn’t.

Performing Over-The-Air tests of CBRS requires a test set that includes that frequency band as well. Our CellAdvisor series easily covers this range plus has the features that allow the engineer to confirm that the CBRS channels are working properly in conjunction with the lower band channels.


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