What is a carrier? A carrier is a company that operates and sells capacity or otherwise provides a network communication service. Communication can be divided into fixed networks and mobile networks. Carriers are therefore those who ensure that the traffic between mobile phones and landlines exsist and works. But a carrier doesn’t just have to be a company that controls voice function between different phones. In addition to voice over fixed telephony and mobile telephony, carriers can also offer IP telephony, broadband and IPTV.
- Carriers drive or rent out capacity over landline networks and mobile networks.
- Carriers supply services in broadband, telephony, IPTV, IP telephony etc.
- Carriers own their coverage within a certain region.
- Virtual carriers rent with a carrier that owns their network.
- The boundary between telephony and broadband is shrinking between carriers.
- Carriers can no longer require a roaming fee.
- There are carriers that are partially owned by the government and others that are private.
Four types of carriers
There are four different types of carriers. One type is the carriers that own their network. These carriers are the ones called MNO which stands for Mobile Network Operator. In Sweden we have several carriers that own their network. Telia Sonera, Tele2, Comviq, Telenor and Hi3G (Hi3G sells mobile telephony and broadband under the company 3) are some examples of MNO.
Then there are so-called virtual carriers. Virtual carriers are called MVNO, Mobile Virtual Network Operator. An MVNO leases a network owned by an MNO but manages the technology itself. MVNO then sells the traffic to its customers. Some of the virtual carriers available in Sweden are Phonera, Alltele and Fello.
We at Soluno are an MVNE (SIP-MVNO). MVNE stands for Mobile Virtual Network Enabler. It is a simpler form of MVNO that controls a smaller portion of the traffic itself.
The fourth type of carrier is called Service Provider, often abbreviated SP. A Service Provider rents all technology by the carrier and has control over invoicing and end customer support only.
Carriers for mobile telephony in Sweden
The carriers operating their own networks in Sweden are Telia, Telenor, Tele2, Tre and Net1. Telia is Sweden’s largest mobile carrier and was also the first carrier in Sweden. Next in size is Tele2. They operate all their mobile networks in collaboration with other carrier and do not have their own network there. Telenor owns its own 3G network, with coverage in Stockholm, Gothenburg, Malmö, Lund and Karlskrona. But it is Huawei that builds and maintains it. Then they have 3G together with Tre and GSM and 4G have been built in collaboration with Tele2. The company Tre (3) has two 3G networks and is also expanding its own 4G network at both 800 and 2600 MHz.
In addition to the carriers that own their own network, there is a lot of MVNO. In other words, companies hiring on other carriers networks. Examples of these are Cellip, ComHem, Comviq, Easy Telecom, Halebop, Hallon, iCentrex, Phonera, TDC and Telavox. There are many more that are not mentioned above and new competitors are emerging in the market all the time.
Internet through a carrier’s fiber or mobile network
With internet’s development, carriers have a more important role today in society. The use of smartphones in Sweden is one of the highest in the world. To be able to access internet in a smartphone it requires signing up with a carrier that offers data surf.
Mobile carriers have today built out their networks so that most in Sweden have access to fast data speed, even up to the fourth generation’s mobile network. Today it’s therefore possible to quickly and easily access broadband through mobile broadband from most carriers.
With the help of fiber optics broadband carriers have developed fast internet to major parts of Sweden. With broadband from a carrier you can also access digital TV through the same cables. Similarly, with IP telephony, but it’s not as sought because mobile coverage and broadband covers most needs today.
The future for carriers
Because development of society is heading towards a more connected day-to-day life, stable mobile coverage with fast speed is becoming increasingly more important. This means that the services carriers offer through fiber today will be moved to mobile networks since the upgrades are easier to perform.
Today, there is much talk about the Internet of things, abbreviated IoT. IoT means that devices become “smart” when they are connected to the Internet and can interact with other devices. Examples of this are refrigerators that notify you when the milk is running out and cars that drive themselves. With more and more things that will connect to the network, there will also be a larger amount of data to be sent and received. Therefore, it is required that the extension covers the future need for reliable data transfer that will be required. Carriers will play an increasingly important role in the future when 5G is introduced.
5G is the fifth generation of mobile networks that carriers will introduce around 2020. With 5G you will be able to send up to 10 gigabytes per second. In addition to the increased speed, 5G will have a higher frequency, better throughput, MIMO (Multiple Input Multiple Output) and Beamforming. All these features will together create a much stronger network than its predecessors. It will cover the future needs of both the Internet via desktop and mobile devices. Therefore, mobile services and broadband will merge in the future.
Want to know more about 5G and its features. Then you can read our blog post where we go through things like the benefits of 5g and if it can be dangerous to your health.
Soluno is completely carrier independent. This means that you, who want to get telephony for your company, can do it via us, regardless of which carrier you have or want to use. Our PBX works with all carriers. With us you can change, maintain and mix carrier for your company PBX freely. Want to know more about our PBX services? Contact us and one of our knowledgeable advisers will tell you more about what Soluno can do for your company.
Latest update nov 2019Glossary