Educational institutions across the United States are investing in digital technologies that, aside from transforming the learning experience, promise to improve campus operations, security and communications, and open the door to new e-services for students and staff. To realize the promise of digital transformation, schools at all levels (K-20) need solutions that can extend secure and reliable broadband connectivity campus wide.
Schools and higher educational institutions typically rely on Wi-Fi and Ethernet for connectivity. So, it’s no surprise that that many are upgrading or extending their Wi-Fi networks to prepare for digitalization. But Wi-Fi has limitations in important areas such as multi-user capacity, coverage, reliability, security, and mobility. It’s also prone to disruptions caused by interference and obstacles. These limitations could keep institutions from reaping the full benefits of broadband and digitalization.
Fortunately, there’s a better alternative. Private wireless networks (4.9G/LTE and 5G) enable institutions to use standardized cellular technologies and new spectrum options – including unlicensed spectrum in the Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) band – to meet the stringent demands of digital applications. By complementing their existing Ethernet and Wi-Fi infrastructure with dedicated cellular connectivity, institutions can provide broadband connectivity for everyone and everything, and support a new generation of campus services.
A private wireless network offers better coverage than public mobile networks, particularly in rural areas. With private wireless, the institution owns or subscribes to it as-a-service and manages the network, which provides a critical connectivity foundation as part of the campus infrastructure.
Wireless connectivity for the digital campus and beyond
With a private wireless network, a school or institution can provide secure, high-performance connectivity for staff and students and power applications in every part of the campus, including:
- Classroom and digital productivity tools such as smart boards and smart podiums
- Safety and security systems such as cameras, smoke detectors, emergency call buttons and surveillance drones
- Communications applications such as VoIP/PBX, push-to-talk and push-to-video services
- Digital billboards that can display general, emergency or wayfinding information
- Augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) classrooms that can be accessed remotely
- Enhanced connectivity for student residences, including affordable high-speed internet, emergency calling and smart home services
- E-services for dining, event ticketing, housing services, community engagement and more
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