Frequently Asked Questions
Assured Wireless is playing an important role in the evolution of pervasive connectivity among public sector service providers, emergency services organizations and critical enterprises.
What is HPUE?
HPUE High Power User Equipment is a special class of user equipment for the LTE cellular network that increases device transmission power by six times. This results in increases in range, coverage, uplink speeds and connectivity. The 3GPP international mobile broadband standards group has defined HPUE as Power Class 1.
What is FirstNet® MegaRange™?
FirstNet MegaRange is an AT&T offering using HPUE equipment designed and built by Assured Wireless. AT&T FirstNet MegaRange products improve the connectivity and throughput of data services with AT&T cellular towers – particularly at the edge of typical signal coverage – using specially designed FirstNet Ready modems. High Power User Equipment (HPUE), operates at a higher power class on Band 14 and enables devices to improve uplink data speeds at the edge of the network and provide a more reliable coverage area. FirstNet MegaRange provides the greatest benefit in areas where data connectivity is unreliable, such as remote regions, rural areas, and tribal nations. It also boosts coverage in metropolitan areas that have challenges with cellular signal penetration through buildings and underground parking structures.
FirstNet MegaRange (HPUE) portfolio products include the MegaFixed, MegaMobile, and MegaGo case products along with the AirgainConnect AC-HPUE antenna.
What standards define HPUE?
HPUE has defined High Power User Equipment by the 3GPP international mobile broadband standards group as Power Class 1, which has +31 dBm power output (1.25 Watts) as opposed to the normal Power Class 3, which is + 23 dBm (200 mW). Just to confuse things, one of the domestic carriers implemented Power Class 2 (+26 dBm, 400 mW) on their highest frequency bands to make up for propagation losses, compared to their lower frequencies. They have called it High Performance User Equipment and is also using the abbreviation “HPUE”. Please do not mix the two!
What are the benefits of MegaRange™ HPUE?
LTE Band 14 is in the 700 MHz “sweet spot” of the LTE bands so it inherently has much better range and coverage than the higher frequency LTE bands. In addition, the use of HPUE has been shown in field tests to increase the range of standard Band 14 LTE signals by 80% and more than triple the coverage area of a base station. In addition, even at shorter distances, the reserve power provided by HPUE can optimize the signal to provide significant improvements in data speeds, especially in uplink speeds from the field. Uplink speeds are especially important to First Responders when streaming and/or uploading videos, Telemedicine, and other data-intensive communications from the field.
Who is authorized to use MegaRange HPUE?
MegaRange HPUE is only authorized in the US on LTE Band 14. This LTE band was reserved for First Responders and was assigned to FirstNet. AT&T was the successful contractor in the FirstNet bidding process and now has exclusive access to Band 14. They have given FirstNet users priority on this band.
Can users outside of Public Safety use Band 14?
Yes. HPUE capability can be especially useful for secondary First Responders such as Utilities, Critical Infrastructure, and other support agencies. All AT&T customers can utilize this band at standard power levels, subject to priority and preemption for First Responders.
Who should consider using MegaRange HPUE?
All FirstNet customers can see benefits from HPUE, especially in optimizing uplink data speeds. However, the customers that will see the greatest benefit will be those that operate at the fringes of existing coverage or those that have previously been unable to connect outside of the normal coverage area. This also includes areas deep in buildings, basements, parking garages and other areas where coverage has been a problem.
What devices are available to utilize MegaRange HPUE?
MegaRange HPUE is currently available for use in mobile and fixed devices. Assured Wireless Corp has released two products – the primary device is a small modem that can be conveniently plugged into existing routers, gateways and other devices requiring LTE wireless access. The other device is a small embedded module that can be incorporated into the design of routers, gateways and other devices requiring LTE wireless access as well as devices. An example of this is the AirgainConnect modem antenna.
What carriers and LTE Bands will the Assured Wireless devices cover?
AT&T is the only carrier authorized to operate at the HPUE power level and that can be done only on LTE Band 14. The two Assured Wireless devices currently available provide HPUE capabilities on Band 14 and also cover all other AT&T bands with standard output power.
Are the Assured Wireless MegaRange HPUE devices simply amplifiers?
No. Because of the very stringent international 3GPP specifications imposed on HPUE devices to prevent interference with other LTE and GPS devices, the design of an HPUE device requires a ground-up approach with very tight integration between the LTE chipset and the power amplifier stage. In fact, the Assured Wireless design includes custom hardware/software modifications to existing LTE chipset designs as well as a high-performance power amplifier and additional RF filtering.
Why can’t I just use a booster?
Boosters only repeat noise and only transmit at low power. All they really do is move the antenna location to a different spot. HPUE uses a purer signal and transmits at high power.
Is your equipment certified?
Yes. The Assured Wireless MegaRange HPUE products are fully certified and have gone through rigorous US and international testing such as the PTCRB. FCC. And AT&T FirstNet laboratories. They are listed on FirstNet.com and NIST as FirstNet approved devices.
Is HPUE equipment safe to use?
Yes. The Assured Wireless devices are safe to use for mobile and fixed applications. In the example of a mobile installation with the antenna on the vehicle roof, the HPUE antenna will often share the roof with LMR antennas having 30 or more times the output power.
Is MegaRange HPUE a "bandwidth hog?"
No. In fact, HPUE actually creates an optimized link resulting in a higher-order modulation that actually improves the efficiency and capacity of the base station facilities and makes more spectral efficient use of the network. This means data goes faster, frees up network resources for others, and reduces retransmissions and retries due to weak signal links.
Is the MegaRange HPUE technology patented?
Yes. Assured Wireless’ HPUE is covered by several issued and pending patents. Assured Wireless is building the devices and is offering licensing agreements.
Learn more about the AW12 Modem from Assured Wireless Corporation, the leader in HPUE technology.
What is the AW12?
The AW12 is a complete radio modem device that operates on all AT&T bands and directly connects to PCs, Routers, and other equipment to create a broadband connection.
Does the AW12 operate with carriers other than AT&T?
No. The AW12 has been designed for exclusive use on the FirstNet and AT&T networks on all standard AT&T bands. By US regulations, the HPUE feature is only available on LTE Band 14 which is exclusively used by FirstNet and AT&T.
What is the output power of the AW12?
The AW12 provides HPUE operation (Power Class 1, +31 dBm) on AT&T/FirstNet LTE Band 14 and standard transmit power (Power Class 3, +23 dBm) on all other AT&T bands. The additional power on Band 14 greatly improves the range, coverage, uplink data speeds and overall connectivity of the AW12. Note that the actual output power of the AW12 is always under the full control of the connected cellular network and varies in real time to optimize the signal being received at the base station.
What operational improvements should be noticed when using the AW12?
AW12 users can expect better range, coverage, uplink speeds, and connectivity. The HPUE FAQ section gives more detailed information on the benefits of HPUE in various operational scenarios.
What is the input power for the AW12?
The AW12 operates from a nominal 5-12 VDC supply. Note that standard USB connections do not have the sufficient current capability to power the AW12 in high power modes so that a separate DC power supply (minimum 15W) is required. A 9 ft. vehicle power cable is included with the AW12. The companion AW12-EI is available to power the AW12 from 9 – 36V DC or PoE Type 2 sources. An AC Power Supply (model AW12-DE-ACC) is also available.
What type of USB connection is required for the AW12?
The AW12 uses a USB 3.0 SuperSpeed connection to operate at full Cat12 data speeds. The AW12 is also compatible with USB 2.0 connections.
Does a PC or laptop connected to an AW12 require any special drivers or software?
Windows PCs will require downloading a free driver that can be found on the SUPPORT page of our website at www.assured-wireless.com/support. Many Linux distributions natively support the AW12. After the driver is active the AW12 connection status can be viewed through the standard wireless connection manager. After the connection is established the AW12 will operate as would any Wi-Fi or other Internet connection.
What antenna connectors are provided on the AW12?
The AW12 has four standard SMA-type RF connectors. They are labeled as follows:
|PRI||This is the Primary LTE antenna port for all bands except Band 14|
|B14||This is the HPUE port for Band 14 only|
|DIV||This is the LTE Diversity antenna port for all bands|
|GNSS||This is the antenna port for the GPS antenna|
When connecting the AW12 to the antenna, always make sure that the appropriate leads from the antenna are connected to the appropriate RF connectors to avoid damage to the AW12 or antenna. See the list of certified antennas on the AW12/products/ page that we have tested for compatibility with the AW12.
The GNSS SPA Connector provides both the RF and power connection to the external, active GNSS/GPS antenna.
Does the AW12 need its own SIM card?
Yes, the AW12 requires its own 3FF High Temperature Range Micro SIM card. Follow the instructions in the Quick Start Guide to insert it. You should contact your FirstNet or AT&T Sales Representative, Authorized Dealer or Reseller for more information on the qualifications and how to obtain it.
Does the network know that the connected AW12 has high power capability?
Yes. A MegaRange HPUE-provisioned AW12 automatically identifies itself to the network that it has Power Class 1 MegaRange/HPUE capability.
What antennas have been tested and approved for use with the AW12?
We carefully curate antennas to work with AW12. Please see our Products page for the latest list of approved antennas: www.assured-wireless.com/products/
How should the HPUE antenna be situated compared to existing antennas?
To avoid interference, we recommend that the LTE antenna connected to the AW12 be physically separated by a meter (three feet) or more from existing LTE or LMR antennas on the rooftop of a vehicle.
Is MegaRange HPUE safe to use?
Yes. The output power of our HPUE devices is 1.25 Watts maximum and is below the output power of 700 MHz LMR radios whose antennas are also often on the roof of Public Safety vehicles.
Find answers about our AW12-EI Ethernet Injector below. This innovative product is a companion device to our AW12 Modem.
What is the AW12-EI?
The AW12-EI is a companion product that provides an ethernet port and power conditioning to the AW12 device.
What kind of Ethernet connection does the AW12-EI provide?
The AW12-EI provides a high speed (Gigabit) Ethernet connection to the associated router, switch or other connected network device using a standard RJ-45 connector. It is also capable of PoE (Power over Ethernet) capability (see below).
What is the operating voltage range of the AW12-EI?
The AW12-EI has an extended DC input voltage range of 9 to 36 VDC and provides protection from vehicular voltage transients. In addition, the AW12-EI also has the capability to accept operating power from PoE (Power over Ethernet) Type-2 sources.
What are the PoE requirements of the AW12-EI?
When PoE operation of the AW12-EI is needed, care must be taken to assure that the power source meets IEEE 802.3at Type-2 PoE specifications, also known as PoE+. This ensures the connected PoE device has sufficient capability to provide the necessary DC power (up to 25 Watts) for full HPUE operation of the associated AW12.
What do the led status colors on the AW12-EI mean?
The multi-color LED on the AW12-EI provides invaluable data on the connection status of the associated AW-12 HPUE Modem:
Blue = Initialization
Flashing Red = Data connection error. Check that a properly provisioned SIM has been inserted.
Solid Red = No SIM is installed
Flashing Green = Connecting
Solid Green = Attached to the network
Find answers about our AW12-EI Ethernet Injector below. This innovative product is a companion device to our AW12 Modem.
What is the MegaGo?
The MegaGo is a case that includes our patented AW12 HPUE technology, custom-designed Band 14 integrated antenna, a rechargeable battery pack, and Wi-Fi hot spot.