Comtech Telecommunications said that it has finalized a $1.3 million contract expansion with an unnamed Tier 1 U.S. mobile network operator under which Comtech’s Location Technologies group will support 5G location services for public safety and consumer applications.

Comtech’s Location Technologies group’s solutions include precise device location, mapping and messaging for public safety, MNOs and business customers.

“This mobile network operator continues to add state-of-the-art location technology to its service offerings, which enhance performance and public safety for their customers,” said Fred Kornberg, chairman of the board and CEO of Comtech. “Comtech Location Technologies has been selected for its end-to-end solution, which greatly enhances the operations and ease of use for application developers and end users.”

5G location-based services were one of Comtech’s areas of focus at last fall’s Mobile World Congress Los Angeles, when it said that “geospatial intelligence will be an important component of these next-generation networks.”

In related news, research firm SNS Telecom & IT estimates in a new report that annual investments in public safety LTE/5G-ready infrastructure will be more than $2 billion by the end of this year, mostly drven as a result of new network build-outs and the expansion of existing ones private and hybrid commercial/private networks in licensed bands. SNS expects a compound annual growth rate of about 10% through 2023, at which point it estimates that the market will be worth more than $3 billion.

“Leveraging their extensive LTE/5G NR-capable cellular infrastructure assets and technical expertise, mobile operators have managed to establish a foothold in the public safety broadband market—with active involvement in some of the largest public safety LTE/5G engagements using both commercial and dedicated public safety spectrum,” SNS Telecom & IT said, pointing out high-profile projects around the world that include AT&T’s FirstNet, South Korea’s Safe-Net and Britain’s ESN public safety broadband networks.

“In addition, even though critical public safety-related 5G NR capabilities are yet to be standardized as part of the 3GPP’s Release 17 specifications, public safety agencies have already begun experimenting with 5G for applications that can benefit from the technology’s high-bandwidth and low-latency characteristics,” SNS added. “In the near future, we also expect to see rollouts of localized 5G NR systems for incident scene management and related use cases, potentially using up to 50 MHz of Band n79 spectrum in the 4.9 GHz frequency range (4,940-4,990 MHz) which has been designated for public safety use in multiple countries including but not limited to the United States, Canada, Australia, Malaysia and Qatar.”

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