“Private cellular” or “private mobile” networks are among the new possibilities created by new spectrum access methods, most especially license-exempt or shared spectrum. In principle, that could include enterprise voice networks or shared indoor mobile infrastructure.

Private networks are far from new. Enterprises always have created their own phone services (private branch exchanges, local area networks, Wi-Fi hotspots). Now we might well see private 4G and 5G networks, deployed by enterprises.

Nokia, for example, is introducing platforms that can use unlicensed and shared spectrum to create private end-to-end networks for vertical applications in specific  industries. That might prove important for  enterprises, venues and the hospitality industry in the United States using the 3.5 GHz Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) shared spectrum.

Enterprises can use CBRS to create “private LTE” networks. “Neutral host” networks are another application, where an enterprise can create an open platform supporting multiple mobile suppliers for indoor access.

Likewise, Quortus and Telefonica believe  DECT replacement and mixed voice and secure data services can be created for enterprises and other organizations using unlicensed spectrum.

Telefónica says it is pioneering the use of private cellular, particularly for its industrial and enterprise customer base. Emergency restoration is another potential application for Quortus solutions.