FAQ-FreedomFi 5G

Crypto Miner

Beta program for 5G Helium

Earn HNT

Cryptocurrency by providing 5G cellular coverage.

Helium Technology

Allows anyone to build out massive, cost-effective IoT infrastructures.

Low Power IoT

HotSpots are the better way to build wireless IoT infrastructure.

A frequently asked questions

Folks, thank you all so much for your interest and support in the Helium-compatible FreedomFi Gateways for CBRS and Wi-Fi Offload. We are continued to experience an unprecedented volume of waitlist submissions and are working to increase capacity and fix various errors people are encountering. There have been a number of common issues that people experienced, so instead of answering individual questions we are publishing this supplemental FAQ. If you have additional questions please email and allow us a few days to get back to you.

We are aware of the issue. This has affected many people. If you have been charged that means your place in line is secured. We will send you a separate email with the confirmation ID number in the next couple of days.

Yes. If you want to refund, please send an email please reference the email you used to register for the waitlist and order ID. If you haven’t received an order ID due to the error above, please wait 2 days. We will provide an order ID which you can later use to cancel the order.

Our initial release focuses on mobile data offload using CBRS spectrum band, which is only available in the US. As we expand into Wi-Fi based mobile data offload and add new data roaming partners and radio vendors, we’ll be rolling out the services in countries out of the US. Expect to hear more towards the end of 2021

We are working with a couple of radio vendors that we will certify with the FreedomFi Helium Gateway. There will be indoor and outdoor options. We’ll provide more info closer to release.

Yes, that is the main feature of this new approach to building out network coverage. You can see more about inter-operator roaming here.

Magma team is working on S1 and S8 inbound and outbound, projected timely is this summer. Magma currently supports x2 handovers.

No, regular gateway is for private LTE. The Helium version has extra hardware and software to enable mining.

Currently targeting $500/unit, but we’ll announce the final price closer to shipping. 

We are working on the website, all orders will be processed. If we charge you, you will get a followup email. You can email to ensure we have a tracked request. 

—-We will be updating this FAQ in real time as more problems occur… but hopefully not =) —-


The FreedomFi Gateway puts the core functions of a 4G/5G network close to the edge of the network to allow the greatest flexibility for customer deployments. Inside the FreedomFi Gateway are the core functions needed to provide network connectivity and policy enforcement for end devices. For example, the 4G FreedomFi gateway runs the MME, SGW, and PGW. Other services like the subscriber data in the HSS are housed in the cloud orchestrator. The FreedomFi Gateway supports the standard LTE and 5G southbound interfaces to commercial radios allowing customers to mix and match radios and avoid getting locked in to vendor relationships.


At a high level, there are three key differences between 5G/LTE and Wi-Fi. The first difference is that wi-fi uses an unscheduled channel sharing mechanism, whereas 5G/LTE both use a scheduled channel sharing mechanism. The added control scheduled access means that 5G/LTE networks can deliver much higher quality of service, delivering the right data to the right client at the right time.
The second big difference is power. Wi-Fi uses unlicensed spectrum that is capped at 4 watts of output power for most use cases by regulation. Whereas 5G/LTE networks mainly use licensed, or license shared access spectrum (like CBRS) which have higher power limits. In the case of CBRS, the transmit power limit is 25 times higher than a 20 MHz Wi-Fi channel. Licensed spectrum limits are usually significantly higher still. That power means clear reception farther away from the base station.
The third key difference is security. 5G/LTE networks provide superior protection of user and control data compared to Wi-Fi networks. The use of physical security like SIM cards and mutual authentication of network and devices, provide additional protections over and above what is offered by Wi-Fi.

FreedomFi Gateway hosts will provide wireless network coverage for IoT devices and cellular devices (like cell phones) operating in CBRS spectrum band. In return for providing this coverage and passing data through the device, operators are rewarded with HNT cryptocurrency. HNT cryptocurrency is freely exchangeable to other cryptocurrencies (such as Bitcoin etc.) or fiat currencies at many popular cryptocurrency exchanges. Please refer to public data sources for HNT price and places to trade.

Yes. In addition to the FreedomFi Gateway you will need to buy a radio, certified to operate in the CBRS band. We are currently working with a number of CBRS radio manufacturers to certify their products’ compatibility with FreedomFi Gateway and the Helium network. We expect the radios to cost between $500 and $5000, depending on radio signal strength and throughput capabilities. The more powerful and expensive radios will enable owners to mine more HNT rewards.

We expect the production cost of FreedomFi Gateways to be $500. Cost of additional equipment for earning rewards related to cellular data offload may vary from $500 to $5000 per CBRS cellular radio. FreedomFi Gateways will allow you to plug in or more CBRS radios to maximize data offload throughput and your resulting HNT mining rewards.

Yes. HNT mining is a new, optional capability that can be switched on and off. Traditional FreedomFi Gateways with no mining or LoRa module are still available for sale and immediate shipping on FreedomFi website for $299. FreedomFi remains committed to its mission of helping customers build cost efficient and secure Private 5G networks with open source software and commodity hardware.

Not at this time. Our initial release focuses on mobile data offload using CBRS spectrum band, which is only available in the US. As we expand into Wi-Fi based mobile data offload and add new data roaming partners and radio vendors, we’ll be rolling out the services in countries out of the US. Expect to hear more towards the end of 2021.

FreedomFi Gateways will come with a pre-integrated LoRa module and, by default, will act as a Helium hotspot, mining rewards for proof of coverage and data on the LoRa network. However, in addition to LoRa HNT rewards, FreedomFi Gateway owners will also be able to also earn rewards for offloading data from mobile networks of the Helium network roaming partners offering rewards to the hosts above and beyond the traditional Helium Hotspots. Learn more about mobile data offload here.

The rewards may vary depending on the location of your FreedomFi Gateway, capability of the CBRS radio plugged in to it, reliability of your internet connection and the number of roaming partners on the network. We encourage you to review Helium Explorer to see historic rewards mined by various hotspots or join a Helium discord channel to find out more.

While the first release of FreedomFi Gateway will only provide capability for mobile data offload using CBRS radios, we expect to add the capability for offloading data using Wi-Fi access points in Q1 2022. That capability will via a remote software update and will not require purchasing a different FreedomFi Gateway.

Expect an order of magnitude lower cost per gigabyte offloaded compared to alternatives and a quick, standards based integration with your mobile network core. Please contact us to learn more.

Generally, no. Roaming into a third-party service provider network will require you to have a business relationship with that particular service provider. So while it is technically feasible to implement and there are a number of production implementations where Magma has been used for roaming to third-party service provider networks, it is not a service you’ll get out of the box by investing in a FreedomFi Gateway.
No. The current version of FreedomFi gateway only implements the components to support data connections. Supporting voice calls requires the part of the network core referred to as “IMS” which Magma doesn’t currently implement. If voice support is critical to your project, please contact us and we can share alternative options as well as more details on Magma roadmap, pertaining to voice services.


No, only devices that have a SIM card for your network and support the frequency band in use can connect. In the US, most smartphones produced in the last 2 years support the CBRS band. You can use the website to check if a device supports your band. Simply go to the site, plug in the device model, and click on the “expand” button in the Network row to see the supported bands.iNote that the CBRS frequency band is called Band 48 sometimes noted under a “TDD LTE” subsection.


No, if the small cells can be connected back to a single FreedomFi Gateway via ethernet, multiple small cells and be provisioned on a single gateway. In this case the limiting factor becomes the ethernet port capacity. Please ask us for further information if you plan to use more than one small cell per gateway and we can help with capacity planning.


FreedomFi Gateway1$299
Small Cell1~$4,500 (Baicells 436q retail)
Sim Card1$50 (SmartJac)
SAS Relationship1$20/mo/small cell (estimate)
CPE Device1~$200 (older unlocked smartphone)
We use SmartJac for our FreedomFi cards. They have been easy to work with and always very responsive. There are certainly other providers including tier-1 providers like Gemalto/ThalesGroup down to smaller vendors on Alibaba.


In the USA you can work with an FCC approved SAS provider currently including Amdocs, CommScope, Federated Wireless, Google, or Sony. Outside of the US, spectrum can be purchased from a regulator or via a partnership with a local mobile network operator.


Yes! The FreedomFi Gateway supports the standard “S1” interface for LTE and “N1/N2/N3” interfaces for 5G NR. So any cell supporting these standard interfaces can be used. Disaggregated cells break the base station into pieces below these standardized interfaces in the protocol stack e.g. F1 interface for split 2, or eCPRI or NGFI for split 7.
For customers in the USA, the Baicells Nova-436q or the Accelleran E1000 are flagship products supporting the CBRS band 48 spectrum. In addition there are CBRS products from companies like Airspan, Blinq Networks, and traditional vendors like Ericsson, Nokia, and Samsung.


FreedomFi is actively contributing to the operation and roadmap of the Magma open source project. The FreedomFi Gateway is a curated and maintained version of the Magma Access Gateway (AGW). FreedomFi takes the Magma project software release and puts it through an additional layer of testing and hardening before we release an image to our customers.

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