Archive-March 2017-Tech Bulletin-IPv4 Announcement-Cradlepoint And Sierra Wireless-EOL LS300 AT&T

As an active adviser to your wireless communications initiatives, USAT Corp. has information to share:

*IPV4 & IPV6 INFORMATION*
 
VZW recently announced that it will stop issuing new public static IPv4 IP addresses on June 30th 2017. USAT has analyzed how this will affect our critical infrastructure clients and an initial summary is below:

  • If your organization’s communication devices are currently sending data on a Verizon private network, you will not be affected by this change.
  • Any existing IPv4 public static IPs currently in use will continue to operate as usual after June 30th 2017.
  • Any devices activated on the VZW network after June 30th MAY NOT be assigned an IPv4 public static IP address. USAT has received no guarantees that exceptions will be made.

 
IN ADDITION, PLEASE ALSO CONSIDER: that if your organization has reserved IPv4 public static IP blocks but do not have the associated IPs assigned to an active device on the VZW network, it may be in your best interest to activate them before June 30th, or VZW will have the right to reclaim those unused IPs from your organization.
 
Below find two statements from USAT’s key manufacturer partners about IPv6 support for their product lines post-June 30th. In both cases, the news is good:

 
If you have any concerns about a specific wireless gateway/router or if you are questioning whether your application requires a public static IP, please contact your USAT Corp. sales account manager or respond to this email.
 
*SIERRA WIRELESS FIRMWARE—IMPORTANT ACTION REQUIRED—UPGRADE TEMPLATES TO 4.7*
 
It is important to note that all new devices in the GX450, RV50, and ES450 product lines from Sierra Wireless are shipping from the factory with 4.7 pre-loaded. Once a device has 4.7 on it, the device cannot be downgraded to an earlier firmware.  In preparation for new deployments, USAT recommends that all current users of the GX/ES and RV families upgrade an existing unit in their stock to the latest firmware and validate that all of their configurations work with their solutions. 
 
More information about the ALEOS 4.7 firmware update can be viewed here: http://usatcorp.com/key-points-sierra-wireless-aleos-4-7-0-firmware-release/

*SIERRA WIRELESS End Of Sale (EOS) ANNOUNCEMENTS*

 
–All GX400s will EOS on April 30th 2017 with the last ship date set for 12/30/2017.
–The AT&T LS300 will also EOS on April 30th 2017 with the last ship date set for 12/30/2017.
–Please note the VZW LS300 is still actively in production and EOS has not yet been announced.
 
Do not hesitate to contact USAT with specific questions related to your business applications. Remember that we are your partners for all elements of a wireless project—including cabling, antennas and enclosures. Check out the spec sheet for the new log periodic LPDA antenna by Poynting that is making a significant difference in connectivity in fringe locations for clients using 4G only LTE Advanced network devices.

Static IP For AT&T LTE Not Yet An Option

Since the the Sierra Wireless GX440 for AT&T LTE was just released, I’ve been making some inquiries to ensure that our projects involving this device proceed very smoothly. Two bits of info that I would like to share:

  • A special SIM for AT&T LTE will be required to run on the AT&T LTE network the SIM that we used for 2G/3G deployments will not work.
  • At this time AT&T’s LTE Network does not support CCS or I2Gold. What this means is that Static IPs are not yet available on the AT&T LTE network. A resolution is being worked on and I hope to have an update on this to share soon.

Sprint & Clearwire kiss and make up

According to a report today from the Wall Street Journal, Sprint and Clearwire’s ongoing feud over financial and technological commitments has been settled for now, with Sprint agreeing to four-year deal that includes a $1.6 billion cash infusion in the WiMax wholesaler.

Sprint’s commitment to building out an LTE network appears unchanged, which means that the wireless carrier will have to support two high-speed networks for the foreseeable future.  The details of the agreement will allow Sprint to continue to sell lower-cost smartphones that run on the WiMax network while providing Clearwire with a much-needed capital infusion.

Sprint drops unlimited WiMAX

Sprint continues its inexorable march towards LTE and away from WiMax, announcing late last month that unlimited access to the Clearwire WiMax spectrum will no longer be offered to its mobile customers.

As a result, none of the three plans Sprint plans to offer will include unlimited WiMax, which is somewhat interesting, given their attempt to use unlimited 4G plans as a point of differentiation from VZW, AT&T and T-Mobile.

“Sprint is making these changes to help ensure we can continue to invest in areas that matter to our customers and that differentiate us from our competitors: simple and unlimited pricing plans, including unlimited data on the Sprint network without throttling for smartphones; cutting-edge selection of 4G, Android and other devices and strong customer service,” Sprint spokeswoman Emmy Anderson told FierceWireless.

One can read the above as “We don’t really want to continue to pay Clearwire for access to their WiMax spectrum, so we are going to try and figure a way to make the removal of same a net positive for our users.”

Read the full story here.

Sierra Wireless AirLink GX400–An Insider's Guide

At CTIA in April, Sierra Wireless announced their new intelligent gateway platform, formally code-named Sharks, now officially named the Sierra Wireless Airlink GX400. I must editorialize here, and mention that I am disappointed that Sierra Wireless has made a departure from the former AirLink naming convention, which was word-based, and moved into the generic alpha-numeric format. A quick search of  the product name GX400 on Google turns up a Dell computer and a Honda car. Thus, the term GX400 is going to be difficult to brand as a Sierra Wireless intelligent cellular gateway. I vote that they immediately change the name to the Eagle. The ALEOS operating system on the GX400 soars, so Eagle would have been apt.

The feature set of the GX400 is an interesting amalgam of features from the Sierra Wireless Raven X and the Pinpoint X. This device has both the serial and the Ethernet ports of these devices, as well as the built-in GPS receiver of the PinPoint X. For clients who are streamlining their IT standards list for wireless telecommunications, and would like a single platform that can handle M2M and Automatic Vehicle Location (AVL) applications,  than this is the one. In addition, it is significantly less expensive than the Pinpoint X and much less expensive than the MP–both entries in the AVL space that Sierra Wireless has been very successful with. So why won’t every end-user jump ship from the PinPoint and the MP to the GX400 then? Well, the GX400 does not, at least at this time, have an option to integrate an WIFI access point inside the device, as the MP series does. And the GX400 also does not currently have any i/o telematics ports to offer, so setting up triggers with the GX400 is not possible at this time. As you may have noticed, I am being careful to use time qualifiers when discussing the feature set of the GX400 and comparing the feature set of the GX400 with the Pinpoint and the MP. This caution is due to the fact that the GX400 does have an expansion slot. It is my strong belief that Sierra Wireless will soon be announcing the availability of a wireless LAN module for the GX400, and with WIFI in the expansion slot, this functionality would make the device more on-par with the MP. However, please not, this expansion module has NOT been released yet. See more about the Sierra Wireless GX400 specifications at http://www.usatcorp.com/products/Sierra-Wireless-AirLink-GX400.asp

Currently, the VZW GX400 is the first to market, and this device is shipping at this time. Sprint will be next to market, and the AT&T device will be last to market (I hear that it is still being certified on the AT&T network at this time).

As in interesting marketing ploy, (which is also useful for clients that are very interested in rapid adoption of the GX400 platform), Sierra Wireless has announced that clients that buy  a special “upgrade-ready” version of the 3G GX400 today can upgrade to the 4G GX400 anytime prior to 12/31 2011. The upgrade program is not entirely a giant cash-saver and is not entirely high on the convenience meter, as the upgrade requires a $290 investment to perform this upgrade AND a trip back to Sierra Wireless to perform the upgrade. However, it still offers a viable upgrade path that will, ultimately appeal to a select set of enterprise users who need to deploy today, but want future flexibility. And, Sierra Wireless in the interim is able to announce that they have made the first LTE intelligent gateway available to the marketplace. For a complete description of the GX400 3G to LTE Upgrade Program program, you can navigate to http://www.usatcorp.com/pdf/Sierra_Wireless_AirLink_GX400_Upgrade_Program.pdf

In closing, for those Raven X, XT, XE users who are still jittery about rapid obsolescence about their device of choice, (since Sierra Wireless for a short period of time announced the upcoming end-of-life of the Raven in 2010), fear not. The Raven is still on the roadmap for 2011 and 2012 as well.

Initial Experience With The Digi Connect WAN 4G

4G Network Device Options

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m back after a hiatus, and am eager to share with my peers information about wireless gateways and routers that are available on the “nominally 4G” networks. I have a lot of information to report on, so this data download will take multiple posts. Digi International was the first to release a wireless gateway  for Sprint’s WiMax network. The unit, the DIGI Connect WAN (DC-WAN-Y301-A) is a wireless gateway (see info here http://usatcorp.com/proddetail.asp?prod=DC-WAN-Y301-A). The first one that my team sold and integrated was for a security company that will be using this device to back-haul surveillance video. This application makes perfect sense, as the Sprint WiMax network has the kind of throughput that makes it a powerhouse for transmitting realtime-video. And hey, the great airtime plans that Sprint is offering for WiMax help, too! We were very optimistic to see this device put into a testing environment by a security company. However, the gilding on the lily was tarnished when we worked to provision this device and low and behold, Sprint did not have a static IP option available for it. This revelation caught our company (and Digi) unaware! We saved the day by hosting a DNS name for the device for the client. However, we all need to do a SHOUT OUT to Sprint about offering a static IP option for this scenario. That reminds me that I have to check back and see if Sprint has any ETA on this. If anything has changed, I will reveal the resolution in a future post.