As you probably know, Facebook changed its name last year. It was the second of the four OTT players we profile to do so. The group is, of course, now known as Meta.
It’s a similar trick to the one performed by Google, which changed its name to Alphabet in 2015.
In both cases, a company was moving from the name of its historical key product to a name signifying wider future ambitions.
And in those wider ambitions, spectrum plays a key role. It’s well known that the two companies are keen to get their hands on unlicensed frequencies below 1 GHz. They also like the idea of sharing mid-band spectrum in the 3.5 GHz, 6 GHz and mmWave bands. So do Amazon and Microsoft, the other OTT players we have profiled.
In the 6 GHz band, for example, Google has applied to US regulator the Federal Communications Commission to become an Automated Frequency Coordination system operator. This is an important step toward putting the band to use for new applications.
All four OTT players are supporting the Open RAN movement and are members of multiple Open RAN technical and advocacy organisations. They are all increasingly active in the satellite sector, and are seeking to provide services to the growing market for private 5G networks.
Microsoft, for example, has introduced Azure Private 5G Core, which helps operators and systems integrators to deploy these networks.
All of this shows that in the OTT space, it’s not just names that are changing. If you subscribe to our Spectrum Research Service, you can find out more in our updated profiles of OTT players’ spectrum policies.