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What is Dynamic Spectrum Sharing?

Dynamic spectrum sharing (DSS) is an emerging technology that enables communications providers to maximize the use of their available spectrum. First proposed by the 3GPP in 2017, Dynamic Spectrum Sharing is a technology created to optimally manage spectrum resources in order to optimize the use of spectrum, reduce interference, increase connectivity capacity, and enable new frequency bands.

How dynamic spectrum sharing works

Dynamic Spectrum Sharing is based on the concept of access splitting and re-farming of spectrum. Access splitting refers to the ability of a Dynamic Spectrum Sharing enabled base station to support multiple access technologies, such as 4G LTE and 5G New Radio, at the same time. Re-farming is the ability of a base station to allocate users to a certain frequency band depending on network conditions and traffic load. The advanced software algorithms of Dynamic Spectrum Sharing allow the base station to analyze traffic load and user type in order to dynamically adjust spectrum allocation. This innovative technology is what enables the co-existence of older 4G LTE users with newer 5G NR users. Additionally, it allows for dynamic allocation of throughput and data rates to maximize overall performance, based on user and network needs.

Advantages of dynamic spectrum sharing

Dynamic Spectrum Sharing offers numerous benefits to communications service providers. The most notable of these advantages is the increased efficiency that comes with the dynamic allocation and synchronization of spectrum between multiple users. This improved efficiency leads to better spectral usage and improved spectral efficiency without impacting the current functionality of 4G LTE devices or 5G NR devices. Additionally, it leads to reduced interference between users and better network coverage, bandwidth allocation, higher data rates, and lower latency. Furthermore, Dynamic Spectrum Sharing technologies create new opportunities for frequency bands which may have previously been unavailable or uneconomical for use with traditional wireless solutions.

Challenges facing dynamic spectrum sharing

There are challenges facing Dynamic Spectrum Sharing technology that must be addressed in order for it to be successfully implemented. Chief among them are the regulatory and incentivizing challenges. On the regulatory front, the laws and regulations governing spectrum usage must be adapted to accommodate the dynamic spectrum sharing concept. For incentivizing, new incentive models must be created for cooperative spectrum sharing initiatives in order for network operators to be willing to collaborate together.

Dynamic spectrum sharing is innovating the upcoming spectrum

In summary, Dynamic Spectrum Sharing is an advanced communications technology which allows for increased spectral efficiency, reduced interference, and new spectrum opportunities. Although there are certain challenges that still must be addressed, Dynamic Spectrum Sharing technologies bring innovation and increased capability to a wide range of use cases such as 5G deployments, IoT services, broadband, and mobile network services. With the rollout of 5G networks, Dynamic Spectrum Sharing promises to be an important part of the upcoming spectrum reallocation processes, allowing for the optimal utilization of spectrum resources and unlocking the potential of low-band, mid-band, and mmWave spectrum.

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