The addition next month by AT&T of enhanced fixed wireless 5G connectivity options to its business fiber network options will increase the flexibility and value of the network to customers, the carrier says. The network currently supports more than 2.5 million business locations.
AT&T Wireless Broadband with 5G will be provided by fixed wireless router options from Sierra Wireless and Cradlepoint. AT&T says that the platform, which will have no overage charges, can be used as a primary connection, a way to provide secure work from home (WFH) connectivity or temporary connectivity to a work site.
“It is now almost a full year since the global pandemic accelerated remote work adoption by almost a decade – and throughout the rapid evolution of related business needs, AT&T has been there to enable continued success,” Mo Katibeh, Chief Product and Platform Officer, AT&T Business said in a press release.
As the pandemic begins to fade, relaxation on prohibitions on more traditional business arrangements present a challenge and opportunity to telecommunications providers. People have grown more comfortable with working outside the office.
It is unclear what the new normal will be, but it is unlikely to be the same as it was in the past. Combining WFH and more traditional use cases may be a way for AT&T Business to hedge its bets until the level at which people remain outside corporate offices becomes clear.
AT&T Business is among the many service providers that reacted to the surge in WFH. Last May, it introduced Home Office Connectivity, an offering that combines wireline and wireless infrastructure within the carrier’s footprint to bring AT&T High Speed Internet for Enterprise features and services to home offices.
Last month, Vertical Systems Group said that AT&T retained its position as the second largest carrier Ethernet provider in the U.S. Though the market was disrupted by the pandemic, one of the drivers during the past few years has been the growth of SD-WANs, a topology associated with more distributed workforces.