Micro-cell transmitters on utility poles concern Langford residents

by  Katherine Engqvist – Goldstream News Gazette

Langford, West Shore

posted Oct 19, 2016 at 6:00 PM— updated Oct 20, 2016 at 10:13 AM

Langford resident J. Scott and Highlands resident Janis Hoffmann take a look at the cellphone transmitter that was installed near Scott

Langford resident J. Scott and Highlands resident Janis Hoffmann take a look at the cellphone transmitter that was installed near Scott’s home on Fairway Avenue.

— Image Credit: Katherine Engqvist/News Gazette StaffJ Scott was on holidays when Telus Communications Company contractors installed fibre optic cables in her Langford neighbourhood. But upon her return she noticed something on a nearby utility pole that she wasn’t made aware of when representatives went door to door on her street.

Micro-cell transmitters are popping up on utility poles across the province and they’re something some West Shore residents are concerned about.

“The fibre optic is a benign cable,” said Scott, who lives on Fairway Avenue. “These are not benign, they’re sending out signals … The cable doesn’t pose a threat, the cell phone transmitter does.”

After realizing what they were, Scott went around her neighbourhood asking people to sign a petition to have the devices removed from poles on their street. “(Almost) everyone on our street signed the petition,” she said, noting that she was unable to catch someone home at the one household that didn’t sign.

Scott noted the poles and easement areas are supposed to be used for essential services. But she said these transmitters are being used for one company’s professional advancement. “It’s not an essential service.”

Residents on Fairway Avenue aren’t the only ones requesting that Telus move or remove the transmitters.

Colwood resident Sharon Noble said, “if you’re living with this outside your home, you should be told what it is.” She said that when the fibre optic network was going up outside her home on Triangle Mountain, she asked every possible question about them.

Scott added that she asked the same questions and was assured there would be no transmitters.

“They lied to me, I’ll say it,” Noble said. “So many people are sensitive, it’s not uncommon … Avoidance is the only thing you can do.” She pointed out that “if these things are outside your home you have no choice … You can’t turn it off, it’s 24-7.”

Janis Hoffmann was successful in getting a transmitter that would have gone up outside her home moved to a different location, adding that she recognized what the workers were putting up before it was installed. She also had a note, from a doctor specializing in electromagnetic hypersensitivity (EHS), for her grandson and daughter who now live with her.

New to the Highlands, Hoffmann had lived in Colwood for 43 years. “I had no intention of selling my house … I was going to live there forever,” she said.

But after finding out her grandson suffers from EHS, which she said led to a number of health issues, Hoffmann said she began to realize what her home was being exposed to. With her grandson in her home most days, she looked for alternatives.

After moving to the Highlands, in an area with very little exposure to cell towers and Wi-Fi, her grandson experienced major improvements to his health, she said.

Telus spokesperson Richard Gilhooley said the company is “always happy to speak to residents about their concerns.”

Asked why residents were consulted about the installation of fibre optic cables, but not the micro-cell transmitters, he said that when crews install cables they need residents’ permission to do so on private property.

“The distinction there is the micro-cells are on our property,” Gilhooley said. “Because it’s our property there is no duty to consult.” He added, “we always let the local government know what’s happening.”

But that’s a grey area in Noble’s opinion. “Even if they don’t have to legally tell us, they still should,” she said. “They are misleading … They’re not telling people the whole story.”

A City of Langford staff member said the City has no consultation policy for the installation of these types of devices, noting they cannot regulate them as they are on Telus’ property. The infrastructure is, however, regulated by the CRTC.

As for why these transmitters are going up, Gilhooley said demand on the Island for better cell coverage is increasing. He nodded to the rise in 9-1-1 calls originating from cell phones. “We want to be able to keep up with demand,” he said. Alternatively, he added, without additional micro-cell transmitters or towers residents could start to see an increase in dropped calls.

These micro-cell transmitters, he said, are a smaller, lower-powered option to full-sized towers. “That’s the beauty of these things.”

The devices are being installed in areas where Telus, residents or local governments have recognized a need for increased coverage and Gilhooley noted their installation is usually routine. “The response is usually positive.”








Telus tests 5G, rolls out LTE-Advanced Pro in Vancouver

Tuesday 4 October 2016 | 17:28 CET | News

Canadian operator Telus announced that it achieved speeds of 29.3 Gbps in tests of pre-5G equipment with Huawei. The speed tests took place at Telus and Huawei’s 5G Living Lab in Vancouver, where the companies have been trialling next-generation technologies since late last year in a live, real-world setting. In addition to the field trial of 5G, one LTE wireless site in Vancouver has been upgraded with the latest advancement in LTE-Advanced Pro technologies, capable of speeds of up to 1 Gbps. Five more sites will be upgraded in the coming weeks, and Telus customers will be able to take





Huawei and TELUS to create 5G “Living Lab” in Downtown Vancouver

BC Premier Christy Clark visits Huawei headquarters in China to witness deal to help bring the world’s most advanced telecommunications technology to Vancouver

Oct 4, 2016

SHENZHEN, CHINA – Huawei, one of the world’s largest telecommunications and ICT suppliers, today announced a memorandum of understanding with TELUS, Canada’s fastest growing national telecommunications company, to establish a “5G Living Lab”. This innovative new project will test approaches to deliver a next-generation converged fibre-wireless network in downtown Vancouver. The announcement was made on the occasion of the visit of the Premier of British Columbia, Christy Clark, to Huawei’s headquarters in Shenzhen.


To support this ”Living Lab”, Huawei will be making a significant investment to design, test and deploy ground-breaking new technologies, leading towards the development of next-generation 5G based telecommunications networks.

This agreement follows TELUS’ recently announced $1-billion investment to expand its fibre optic network in Vancouver, which will ultimately provide the backbone to support highly efficient and lightning-fast wireless speeds as the development road maps for wireless and wireline networks converge around 5G concepts. Together, Huawei and TELUS are helping the City of Vancouver deliver upon its goal of becoming the worlds’ greenest city[1] by 2020 through providing network capacity and speed that will enable “smart city” and other sustainability-focused technology initiatives.


“TELUS is recognized globally as one of the world’s most advanced telecommunications operators” said Ken Hu, Co-CEO, Huawei. “The opportunity to partner with TELUS to deploy innovative new technologies is critical to our global 5G research and development process and positions TELUS on the leading edge of next-generation telecommunications technology deployment.”


“This project will bring some of the most cutting-edge telecommunications technology available today to Vancouver, building upon our recently announced billion dollar investment to introduce fibre optic technology and further reinforcing our commitment to the city,” said Eros Spadotto, Executive Vice President of Technology Strategy for TELUS. “Working with Huawei, our efforts will lay the groundwork for delivering a converged fibre-wireless network with the potential to deliver dramatically faster wireless speeds, thereby improving citizens’ lives and generating significant new social, educational and economic opportunities. In addition, it will help all levels of government to build a greener, more inclusive and globally competitive Vancouver.”


“There is a natural partnership between British Columbia and Shenzhen,” said Premier Clark. “We both host thriving tech and communications sectors, and are fortunate to work with companies like Huawei and Telus on investments to expand and upgrade ICT infrastructure with the latest technology.”

About Huawei

Huawei is a leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider. Huawei’s 177,000 employees worldwide are committed to bringing advanced communications technologies to operators, enterprises and consumers around the world. Huawei’s innovative ICT solutions, products and services have been deployed in over 170 countries and regions, serving more than one third of the world’s population. Founded in 1987, Huawei is fully owned by its employees, and was recently named again by Interbrand as one of the world’s top 100 brands – the first Chinese company to receive this recognition.

Huawei Canada has been in operation since 2008.  Huawei’s innovative wireless products and services support many of Canada’s leading telecommunications companies, and Huawei’s Canada Research Centre in Kanata, Ontario is a global leader in advanced communications technologies.  We are proud to be a key part of Canada’s ICT Ecosystem.




 Trials Show Just How Fast Huawei’s 5G Can Go

October 11, 2016 — Canadian telecom provider TELUS and Huawei have achieved wireless speeds of nearly 30 Gbps – 200 times faster than the LTE standard in the “5G Living Lab” in Vancouver, Canada. where both companies have been trialing 5G technologies since late last year in a live, real-world setting.

In other static and mobile field trials, Huawei has achieved downlink speeds of 27 Gbps using Polar Code, a 5G channel coding technology, telecomasia.net reported this week.

Polar Code is designed to be several times more efficient than current RAN networks, optimizing encoding and decoding.

In addition to the 5G tests, TELUS showed that it hasn’t forgotten 4G by upgrading its first site to LTE-Advanced Pro, which is capable of up to 1 Gbps –10 times faster than current LTE-Advanced speeds. Five more sites will be upgraded in the coming weeks. LTE-Advanced Pro compatible devices will become available early as next year.




TELUS achieves 5G speeds of 29.3 Gbps with Huawei

Huawei and TELUS announced the achievement of wireless speeds of 29.3 Gbps.

The results, 200 times the current LTE standard, were obtained during trials of 5G mobile technology at the TELUS and Huawei 5G Living Lab in Vancouver.

Solidifying the 5G base to meet the needs of IoT and intelligent devices, both companies were involved in trials since last year in a live, real-world setting.

TELUS customers in the Vancouver region will get early access to the newly emerging wireless technologies in the world, ahead of the 5G services, expected to be on air by 2020.

Also, a 4G LTE wireless site in Vancouver has also been upgraded with the latest advancement in LTE-Advanced Pro technologies with speeds of up to 1 Gbps, which is 10 times faster the current LTE-advanced speeds.

TELUS also added that five more similar sites will be upgraded in the coming weeks.

TELUS is planning to make the latest technologies available as early as next year with LTE-Advanced Pro compatible devices being available by then.


TELUS previously announced a $1 billion investment to connect Vancouver to the TELUS PureFibre network.

RELATED: TELUS to invest 1 bn in optic fiber network in Vancouver

This will provide a foundation to upcoming high speed wireless and wireline networks.

The PureFibre network will also provide enhanced capacity for wireless 5G speeds hiking TELUS fibre investments across Canada.

TELUS saw a revenue growth of 1.5 percent or $3.1-billion in the previous quarter.

TELUS also added that its wireless network revenue increased by 2.6 percent to $1.6 billion owing to subscriber growth, increased customer spending on mobile data and expensive monthly plans.

Also, the total capital expenditure in 2016 was raised by $200 million to $2.85 billion, owing to major investments in copper wire network upgradation to fibre-optic technology.

ALSO READ: TELUS enhances Network Investment in 2016

The Seventh Annual Mobile Broadband (MBB) Forum will be held in Tokyo, Japan on November 23 to 25, 2016, where both companies will discuss and present major developments in the area.

Bell Canada, a network partner of TELUS, also recently announced a successful 5G trial with Nokia for spectrum across the 73 GHz band.

In the meantime, Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint have also announced similar efforts underway for developments in 5G.

Vina Krishnan





Huawei achieves 27Gbps 5G speeds with Polar Code

By Retail Asia on 10/10/2016


Huawei announced it has achieved downlink speeds of 27Gbps using Polar Code, a new innovation in 5G channel coding technology.

During a field trial in both static and mobile environments, Huawei was able to demonstrate that polar code technology can simultaneously meet the typical use cases of the ITU’s 5G definition, which involves speeds in the tens of gigabits, 1ms latency and billions of connections.

The company said polar code demonstrated three times the spectrum efficiency compared to current RAN networks.

Polar code is designed to allow significantly higher spectrum efficiency than current cellular access technologies and to enable decoding with linear complexity.

On the encoding side, polar code can optimize channel capacity close to the Shannon Limit, the theoretical highest capacity of a communications channel before noise introduces faults.

The field trial also took into account the use of millimeter-wave and multiple parallel sessions based on short and large packet sizes.

Last week Huawei and Canada’s Telus also announced the results of 5G lab trialsachieving peak speeds of 29.3Gbps, close to 200 times faster than the current LTE standard. The trials at the Telus and Huawei 5G Living Lab in Vancouver were designed to simulate real-world conditions





Could the 5G Future Pose a Health Risk?


Super-fast 5G wireless is still years away from widespread commercial service but researchers are already wondering if the new networks — which will feature many more radios than previous cellular architectures deployed very densely in towns and cities — could pose a health risk to the general public.

Massey University in New Zealand has announced this week that it got funding to investigate if there will be any adverse effects of electromagnetic radiation to human health caused by the next generation of telecommunication networks called 5G. The research will take place through 2017.


5G — Fifth Generation — wireless is expected to be tens or even hundreds of times faster than 4G, downloading a movie over the network in mere seconds. To achieve that speed — and provide exciting new applications on future networks — 5G will use higher frequencies and be deployed more densely than previous cellular networks, which have largely been determined to be safe for us puny humans, ever have before. (See 5G: What Is It & Why Does It Matter? and 5G: As Close as You’ll Get to a Jet Pack!.)


“With some industry giants predicting 50 billion connected devices by 2020 and with the employment of much higher transmission frequencies proposed for the 5G rollout, it is essential to determine how the future of telecommunications will affect the health of its users,” principal investigator Dr. Faraz Hasan says in the announcement.

Hasan is talking about centimeter and millimeter waves, which have previously only been used in very limited short-range fixed wireless and mobile backhaul applications. It is anticipated with the coming of 5G, frequencies like 15GHz, 28GHz, 39GHz and 60GHz could be put into widespread usage, and these short-range, high-speed signals would require thousands (maybe millions) more radios and antennas to be dotted round the cityscape. 4G networks today are typically built around low- and medium-band radio spectrum (600MHz to 2.5GHz in the US) and a backbone of cell towers with some distributed antennas and smaller radios to extend coverage. (See Sprint: We’re Building a 5G-Ready Network, Not a 4G Relic.)

Operators, researchers and vendors are now turning that model of deployment on its head with plans that will mix some large towers with many, many more small radios using higher frequencies than ever before. So, naturally, health concerns about incredibly dense radio network networks in urban environments are starting to bubble to the surface. (See Sprint’s Saw: ’5G’ Opp Is Moving Signal Closer to Customers.)

There’s a further wrinkle to the 5G radios that it is not even clear from the announcement whether this research will grapple with or not. The FCC, for instance, keeps very tight limits on the antenna power limits allowed for different fixed and mobile applications. Carriers in the US, however, are starting to ask the agency if they can increase the amount of Effective Isotropic Radiated Power (EIRP) — that’s peak antenna gain — used for millimetre wave applications.

 Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) said this in a filing to the FCC in January this year. ‘Conventional’ base station antenna gains for other mobile uses typically have gains in the 9–25dBi range because they are limited by practical antenna size. In mmW bands, however, gains from 20–45 dBi can be achieved depending upon beamwidths desired.A base station power limit of between 68 and 75 dBm EIRP is thus more appropriate for these higher frequency bands than the 62 dBm EIRP maximum proposed based on the properties of other spectrum.

 So there you go, gentle reader, we don’t think you’ll be accidentally sterilized by the super-high power radio waves of the 5G future but we don’t yet fully know what effect incredibly dense mmWave radio networks pumping out really hot signals might have!

Maybe don’t throw out that tin foil hat just yet.

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading









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