GXC says its private wireless is unique with cellular mesh

GXC is a company headquartered in Austin, Texas, that does private wireless. Allen Proithis, CEO of GXC, says what makes the company unique is its cellular mesh technology.

As part of its GXC Onyx platform, the company provides all the necessary components for a private wireless network, similar to other providers such as Ericsson’s Cradlepoint and Celona. Those components include the radio access network (RAN) including antennas, the server and software to run the core network, and the management portal software.

But in addition, it provides cellular mesh, which uses patented technology to connect nodes wirelessly.

Proithis said cellular mesh is conceptually similar to Wi-Fi extenders. But the technology is much more technically complex, and it took GXC engineers a number of years to innovate. “There’s an amazing amount of IP,” he said. The cellular mesh is full-duplex, meaning that it uses the same spectrum channel for the upstream and the downstream, and GXC developed technology to cancel interference.

“We did an implementation for Ohio State University, covering 2,100 acres,” he said. “We put a mesh node over a mile away. It’s a way to extend the network without having to trench over a mile and a half.”

GXC is focused on large private wireless implementations for industrial, agricultural and energy enterprises. “Industrial tends to have a lot of issues with interference,” said Proithis, and he added that “mesh really shines outdoors.”

Proithis said the company considers Celona to be its most direct competitor.

Similar to Celona, GXC has built its private wireless offering targeted to enterprises. “We’re all about having a turnkey solution out of the box,” he said. “There’s a lot of people who grabbed Airspan stuff, which was designed for the telco world, not the enterprise world. We’ve taken an enterprise approach from the ground up.”

He said that while Celona and Cradlepoint offer private wireless that has integrated components, “many other guys have components you have to glue together.”

The company’s private wireless offering is modular, so it can scale from a small deployment with just a couple of nodes to a very large deployment. Or it can scale as necessary for a deployment  in a building that has a lot of metal walls, which will require more access points.

“It doesn’t matter if it’s 1 or 100 access points,” he said. “It’s the same management portal. It’s pre-integrated and easy to put up. It’s made to scale easily and manage like Wi-Fi.”

GXC is currently deploying about 20 nodes in a large chemical facility.

Asked which spectrum GXC’s customers are typically using, he said, “People in the U.S. gravitate to CBRS. We’ve been a member of the OnGo Alliance since the beginning.” But GXC is flexible in terms of spectrum and is just starting to see some international deployments in other sub 6 GHz bands.

GXC’s pedigree

GXC stems from a company that was originally formed in 2016 by some engineers affiliated with the University of Texas. They first worked on photonics technology. But that work eventually led to the private cellular business that is the focus of GXC today. Its investors include Intel Capital, BMW Ventures, Motive Infrastructure Solutions and the University of Texas.

The company currently employs about 50 people, one-third of whom are in India

GXC’s private wireless offering became generally available in late 2022. 

“We’re all about a turnkey NaaS offering. We can get this going in hours. It’s meant to be really easy,” said Proithis.