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Showing posts with label Metrocell. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Metrocell. Show all posts

Thursday, 7 February 2013

The story of Femtocells, Small Cells and Metrocells


Femtocells were introduced many years back as a residential, closed group, small base station. The intention was to provide coverage at home for high speed data (primary) and voice (secondary). It was more for coverage than capacity. In these good old days smart phones were far and few and feature phones were many. WiFi on the phone made it expensive and power hungry so cellular was the way to go.

There were many opportunities for Femtocells to take the centre stage as the concept is technologically sound but the operators have been not very willing to deploy it soon enough. Some operators were more willing to give it a try to fix their own issues, for example Softbank which gave free femtocells, in open access mode, to improve its coverage issues. Femtozone services that promised value addition provided with the Femtocells, never took off. Other promises of exclusive broadcast content using Femtocells for example never materialised due to lack of availability of the handsets and content.




Lot has changed since then. The smartphones and tablets have taken over the market, all of them have inbuilt WiFi that is generally more efficient than the cellular radio, coverage issues have become secondary and capacity issues are a bigger concern. Femtocell players have realised that except for the publicity, there isn't much to gain from the Femtocells. As a result Femtocells were replaced by the term Small cells that represents much more than the old Femtocells. The residential Femtocells have been reduced to being just voice boosters.


The different types of Small cells can be seen in the picture above. Except for the residential, the other types of small cells operate in either the open mode or the hybrid mode. Personally, I differentiate closed Femtocells from the other Small Cells. Metrocell is the upcoming type of Small cell that I believe everyone is focussing on. They operate always in the open mode and have been chosen as the promised one to solve the two major problems of capacity and coverage.

According to the Small Cell Forum introductory whitepaper, Metrocells would see an increased growth in the next few years when the operators start deploying more of them and less of the Macrocells.

So for those of you who don't know, and would like to learn more, an introductory presentation on Metrocells is available here.

If this is an area of interest and you are interested in having and in-depth understanding then we invite you to attend our Metrocells Masterclass which is a one day workshop explaining ins and outs of Metrocell. 

If you are a big organisation and would like us to provide you with a private workshop, please feel free to contact us for details.

We have also started the Metrocells Blog that I will use to post information related to Small Cells and Metrocells in future. Please feel free to take a look at: http://metrocells.blogspot.com/

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Small Cells 'Terminology' and 'Comparison'


Here is AT&T's attempt in comparing the small cells. The above comparison is probably based on the assumption that LTE Small cells are not yet widely available. Once they are, then LTE can be put in for most columns in the Technology part.

See also:



Monday, 26 November 2012

'LTE' and 'Small Cells' specific applications

Some 4 years back, I posted my first presentation here, titled "LTE Femtocells: Stepping stone for 'killer apps' presentation". I had couple of apps in mind that I thought could benefit from both LTE and Small Cells (or Femtocells to be specific).

The first was your phone acting as a Wireless Hard Disk Drive (HDD) that can be used to store things remotely in a server somewhere. This is similar to what is known as the Cloud nowadays.

Picture Source: Dialaphone.

The other day when I read why LTE is suitable for cloud connectivity, I could see that my old idea could start to become a reality. The article is here. Selective abstract as follows:


The LTE network lends itself well to cloud connectivity because it:
  • provides high-bandwidth connections
  • is IP- and Ethernet-oriented, the technologies used to connect to the cloud and within data centers
  • offers tools that operators didn't have in 2G and 3G (such as more granular ability to manage traffic flows and a better, DPI-based view of traffic running on the network)
  • features low latency, which is vital to the small flows and sessions that characterize M2M communications.
The rise of both cloud services and LTE creates a virtuous cycle. Cloud services continue to grow, which helps operators sustain their LTE business model. That growth enables them to accelerate LTE investments. Then operators can support new types of enterprise services, including cloud-based applications.
To take full advantage of this opportunity, operators have to deploy the right backhaul infrastructure. In addition to IP awareness and content awareness, the right backhaul network can leverage the technical advantages that LTE presents:
  • flattened architecture that helps distribute compute and storage resources
  • seamless migration from 2G and 3G for various physical mediums and networking protocols
  • an increase in capacity that starts to put mobile connectivity on par with fixed broadband access.


My reasoning for Small Cell here is, in most cases when you are doing operations that require large amounts of data to be transferred, you will be indoors, either at home or in office or in a low mobility scenario. The requirement for high security and at the same time high speed data transfer that should not be affected by other users in the cell (capacity issues) can be easily solved by using a Small cell (Femtocell for indoors, Metrocell for outdoors).


The other application I had in mind was the Home Security System. I read the following on TotalTele the other day:


3UK's wholesale division on Friday detailed plans to capture high-margin machine-to-machine traffic by partnering with service providers that are likely to have higher-than-average bandwidth requirements.
As a 3G-only operator, the company cannot go after high volume, low margin M2M traffic because it typically only requires a 2G connection. However, there are opportunities to use its 3G network to address more data-hungry verticals that will generate higher traffic volumes.
"The margin on one CCTV M2M connection is more than 50 times bigger than the margin on a smart meter connection," claimed Tom Gardner, lead wholesale manager at 3UK, during Breakfast with Total Telecom in London.
"There is one CCTV camera for every 14 people in the U.K.," he said. "If I can put a SIM in every one of them I'll be a very happy man."
3UK, which on Thursday launched its Ericsson-based wholesale M2M platform, sees a big opportunity in CCTV, particularly for mobile and temporary installations at festivals, for instance. Other potentially lucrative sectors it has identified include digital signage, back-up for fixed Internet connections, and backhauling WiFi traffic from public transport.


I am sure some of you may be thinking that '3' UK uses HSPA network, not LTE, which is true. The point here is that it could be done better using LTE and Small Cells.

The reason for using LTE would be to provide higher data rates, meaning that information can be sent faster, with higher resolution and more regularly. This will help identify the problems earlier. If the CCTV is used indoors or in high usage areas, it would make sense that it connects via Small Cell to avoid creating capacity issues in the Macro network.

Here is the embed again, of my old presentation just in case if it interests you:




Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Quick summary of the 'Operator Mindshare' session from Small Cells Global Congress



We had quite a few interesting discussions in the Small Cells Global Congress, Operator Mindshare session. Here are some of the things that were discussed:

Licensed v/s Unlicensed deployments:
Many operators are now deploying WiFi in the unlicensed spectrum. This can help in the short term to alleviate the capacity problems but as more and more of this unlicensed spectrum nodes get deployed, they create interference between each other and make them unusable for anyone. An example was provided about Tokyo where in some areas, too many free WiFi hotspots means its unusable for anyone. One solution is to have one operator do all the logistics for the deployment and other operators can pay to use the service. Who (operator) would be the first one to go through the process of deploying everything first? Everyone would prefer wait and watch approach.

Providing free WiFi: 
The consensus was that the free WiFi provided by operators don't give any additional benefit to them and there isn't much of a business case. 

Consumer awareness for residential Femtocells:
Globally, not much effort is being done by the operator to make the end users aware of residential Femtocells and this is hampering the take-up  A point was made about when Vodafone launched their product, Vodafone Access Gateway (VAG), it was perceived as negative thing because the ads show that if the coverage was poor you can install this to improve coverage. From a users perspective, it showed that the network had poor coverage. Still consumer awareness is important, how to do it?

Placement of Small Cells:
Where should the public small cells (metrocells) be placed. The Biggest challenges are:
* Site Acquisition is the biggest problem. - This is a bigger problem if lap posts are sought to deploy on public locations
* Rent
* Planning
* Installation
* Power - Lamp posts are centrally switched off, so small cells on laamp posts may need alternative sources
* Power meter if used in a shared location
* Bullet proof (especially in the US)
* Backhaul - especially is non line of sight case.
* Health concerns (if visible)
* Visual appearance
* Opex

Backhaul:
Operators should be clearer in what they want. Right now the vendors are pushing the solutions that operators not necessarily need and not giving what the operators want. The Backhaul should be more flexible and future proof. It should be able to cater for upcoming technologies like Carrier Aggregation, CoMP, etc.

Shared v/s Dedicated carrier for 3G Small Cells:
Dedicated carrier is ideal but is not easily possible for most operators. When shared carrier is used it causes interference and handovers are not easy. 

Interoperability in the new hardware equipment for support of small cells:
Certain vendors are still not creating the the networks that can interwork with other vendors equipment. As we are moving towards LTE, this seems to be a much bigger problem. Sprint for example has 3 completely different networks in the US with no interoperability between them. Standards are not helping either as they do not dictate implementation. 


Some Interesting discussions on Case studies, Business Cases, etc.



Mosaic Telecom:
* Deployed residential Femtocells
* Deployed for coverage purpose
* Dont have handover capability yet
* Want to be able to deploy Microcells/Small Cells on Highways, around 1-2Km radius
* Their typical Microcells use 40W output power
* The cost of deployment if Macro using cabinet, antenna, etc is roughly 100K per site.

Telefonica, O2 trials in UK
* To get access to council lamp posts, it was required that the bidder offer free WiFi
* O2 set a high bar by paying lot of money to the councils in London, but this is not a sustainable model

A Business case for carrier neutral WiFi on light pole in Lima, Peru
* Each light pole can have 3 different locations
* The retail business case is to get the user to usse the offering and maybe offer the operator services, tempting to move to this operator from current one
* There can be a wholesale case of selling the WiFi capacity in bulk to companies, organisations

Some interesting statistics thrown up:
* WiFi cell radius is 30m in South America
* 83% of people in US think that operators should provide free WiFi because of lousy coverage of the mobile network.
* The first 4000 customers of a WiMax operator were using an average of 750 MB per day, 22.5GB per month.
* Some fixed Internet operators are now thinking of putting a cap on unlimited offering at 350GB per month.


There were no consensus and conclusions for many items so feel free to write your opinion in the comments.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

A quick summary of #SCWS2012 in tweets

Summary of the interesting announcements and things that happened in the Small Cells World Summit 2012

DAY 1

@lesanto: "small cells are seen as a viable option to meet the demands of exponentially growing networks". even Mongolia is getting into the small cells!

@lesanto: First keynote speaker is Simon Saunders chairman of the Small Cell forum (he's written a LOT of books on the subject...)





@lesanto: I will be quoting Simon Saunders in this style: SS "this is the premier Small Cells event in the world"

@lesanto: SS "the agenda over the next few days is effectively a guide to all the Small Cells issues - a well balanced program"

@lesanto: SS "people often ask which Small Cells event they should go to. I say this one, if you can only do one industry this is it"

@lesanto: Simon Saunders "why is it that Small Cells are a good idea in the first place?"

@lesanto: SS "the more we try to serve the unlimited demand for data with macro cells the more interference we have to deal with"

@lesanto: SS "Small Cell networks help us to serve those data demands without increasing interference"

@lesanto: SS "we founded the Femto Forum in 2007 to answer these challenges"

@lesanto: SS "through hard work we achieved an open architecture for the 3G Femtocells. We highlighted a business case for Femtocells"

@stewartbaines: Simon Saunders: Capacity at limits, pushing Shannon's Law. We need more cells, tighter interference control and cost control

@lesanto: SS "deploying more small cells decreases network interference if managed properly"

@lesanto: SS "it is very heartening to see operators today deploying Femtocells successfully, we're seeing a great deal of maturity"

@thinksmallcell: Operators are finding the cost savings, churn reduction of femtocells to be much better than originally forecast - Simon Saunders

@lesanto: SS "Key attributes of small cells include Scalability, Automated configuration and optimisation..."

@lesanto: SS "we see the need and opportunity to do even more with small cells"

@Ubiquisys: "Our work today is about differentiating the technology to fit different environments"

@lesanto: "60% of operators surveyed consider small cells will be more important to LTE deployments than macrocells"

@LisaGCisco: Chair Simon Saunders highlights the Small Cell Forum work areas that include home, enterprise, metro and rural small cells

@stewartbaines: Simon Saunders: i struggle to find an operator that does not have small cells on their roadmap

@lesanto: go to http://smallcellforum.org where you can download the Small Cells Market Status report (free)

@lesanto: Small Cells forum now has 76 technology providers as members

@lesanto: In 2007 commercial deployment of small cells = zero -- now we have 41 operators deploying them commercially, including 9 of top 10

@bmbarnowski: great retrospective on the evolution of the femtocell/smallcell forum by SS … 2007 was a lonely year indeed for femtos ..

@lesanto: small cell deployment was once solely focussed on domestic deployment, now deployment is much broader inc commercial

@lesanto: 3.8 million femtocells deployed commercially worldwide

@Alejandro_Avren: 3.8 million femtocells deployed globally, says simon saunders of the small cell forum 

@lesanto: several deployments have reached real scale, such as Sprint : over 600,000 units deployed

@lesanto: there will be more small cells deployed than macrocells by the end of 2012

@lesanto: to summarise : small cells have properly arrived ;0)

@Ubiquisys: By the end of 2012 there will be more Small Cells (6.4m) than Macro Cells

@thinksmallcell: forecast 6.4million small cells by end 2012 = more than all global macrocells all technologies

@lesanto: prediction: 91.9 million small cells will be deployed worldwide by end of 2016

@MarkBLHenry: Simon Saunders: "... The central magic of cellular is spectrum reuse..."

@lesanto: small cells offer a very substantial opportunity to increase capacity in a network

@stewartbaines: Simon Saunders: more small cells (6.4m) than macro (6m) by end of year. 80% all cells will be titchy by 2016 #SCWS2012. I got 2 of them :)

@lesanto: small cells can offer real positive change for the user experience on a 3g network

@lesanto: wi-fi and small cells need integration - they should be deployed in cooperation

@disruptivedean: Survey results at #SCWS2012 about coexistence & integration of Small Cells & WiFi point to wishful & unrealistic thinking about #HetNets

@lesanto: we see the opportunity for a deeper integration of small cells and wifi

@disruptivedean: Just had further evidence about slow/misguided focus of Carrier WiFi. WBA announced a trial of NGH WiFi starting Q4 #TooSlow

@lesanto: 2011 Small Cells Forum published small cell APIs

@Ubiquisys: The two overriding themes of @SmallCell_Forum's work are: a) Open and b) Multi-technology 

@disruptivedean: My summary of intro at #SCWS2012: Good move shifting from femto to broader small-cells. Looking bright for LTE. Unconvinced by WiFi pitch

@lesanto: "Vodafone's strategy is to drive Small Cells from a customer needs perspective"

@lesanto: products such a Vodafone's 'sure signal' need to be plug and play, easy to install and use

@SmallCell_Forum: 3.8 million femtocells deployed globally today #SCWS2012. Market status report now at: http://www.smallcellforum.org/resources-white-papers

@lesanto: Vodafone are now running a trial of commercial small cells in Germany with great feedback already

@thinksmallcell: Vodafone to launch enterprise femtocells in Germany 2013. Good feedback from trials so far

@lesanto: data is becoming continually more important to customers, and they also want less wires and network devices in their homes

@thinksmallcell: Vodafone showcasing new FemtoPlug - embedded femtocell into a small mains plug. 8 calls 21Mb/s. Sagemcom and ALU suppliers.

@lesanto: enterprise customers are a very important segment of Vodafone's femtocell proposition - they want easy integration into their IT

@danieldotfox: Wow. The new Sure Signal product from #Vodafone looks amazing. Well thought out consumer proposition. Nice!

@SmallCell_Forum: Vodafone announces femtoplug: tiny femtocell with ethernet over mains. To be launched in existing markets 'within weeks'. 

@disruptivedean: Liking the new "femtoplug" products announced by Vodafone. Very neat residential femto integrated into electric plug. 

@lesanto: Present speaker, Alan Law, Technical Lead for femtocells, Vodafone Group...

@lesanto: "where do you put small cells? How can we determine where the hot spots are? Fortunately there are tools available to help here"

@lesanto: "geolocation tools can also be exploited for network quality improvements"

@Ubiquisys: "Geolocation can be used to identify traffic hotspots"

@lesanto: "Vodafone have gained essential experience on how to address challenges with public access small cells for many environments"

@lesanto: "the availability of multi-technology small cells eases deployment"

@lesanto: "accelerate availability of multi-technology small cells to reduce the number of site boxes required to ease deployment"

@lesanto: "it not just about network cover and quality - it is also about driving new services and revenue growth"

@lesanto: Next speaker : Sebastien Pham Programme Manager New Products Vodafone New Zealand.

@LisaGCisco: Vodafone's Alan Law underscores importance of Iuh standard to accelerate small cell market adoption 

@lesanto: Vodafone NZ faces the challenge of a relatively large area with a relatively low number of users.

@lesanto: 4.8 million mobile subscribers in 2011 in New Zealand - 97% 3g coverage (vodafone) - rural broadband is very challenging

@lesanto: Vodafone deploying small cells in homes in NZ, but their Sure Signal will only work on Vodafone's own DSL network.

@lesanto: watching a video on how small cells can help you make better mobile calls at home : are you hanging out a window to get a single?

@stewartbaines: Femtos bring broadband to rural communities in NZ:http://www.vodafone.co.nz/suresignal

@lesanto: plug in a Sure Signal small cell box into your DSL and suddenly you can make mobile calls from anywhere in the house!#sorted!

@stewartbaines: No more driving testing: use geolocation tools to identify traffic not-spots. Vodafone at #SCWS2012 #smallcells

@lesanto: Next vid: a small business in NZ in a building known as the bunker - thick concrete and steel walls = poor mobile reception!

@disruptivedean: Ironic that Small Cell industry finally getting enterprise proposition right, at same time that #BYOD drives #BYOSP in businesses 

@lesanto: yep, you've guessed it : they plug in a Sure Signal small cell and their mobiles all work - even inside the bunker ;0)

@stewartbaines: @katebo Orange is doing a prez on it's enterprise femtocell strategy at#SCWS2012. Will grab a post for Connecting Technology blog

@danieldotfox: Small Cell feedback via Vodafone.nz, from customers: It's life changing! We all need and depend on mobiles... Food for thought!

@lesanto: small cells were deployed during the Feb 2011 Christchurch earthquake to replace broken macro cells in certain essential areas

@Ubiquisys: Femtocells have been used in disaster situations for emergency coverage, such as the Christchurch earthquake 

@vodafoneNZ: @Ubiquisys Our network team did incredible work for Chch #eqnz. Used creative tools including the Truck http://bit.ly/NGPzM7

@lesanto: new speaker : Emmanuel Adnot International Strategy Manager at Orange...

@lesanto: Orange Group had $45bn turnover in 2011

@lesanto: talking about : How Femtocells support Orange's B2B strategy...

@lesanto: "coverage needs in enterprise markets are niche" Emmanuel Adnot, Orange (EA)

@lesanto: "10% of B2B customers have indoor mobile reception issues that effect their business"

@lesanto: "10% is a niche but it still represents a significant market"

@lesanto: "45% of those connectivity issues are suffered in basement or storeroom situations" EA

@lesanto: "80% of customers suffering local connectivity issues are ready to move to an operator offering a solution to the problem"

@lesanto: "small cells are part of the B2B indoor coverage strategy" EA

@lesanto: "30% of B2B users are using smartphones - but that share is growing massively"

@lesanto: small b2b customers need both wi-fi and small cell solutions to answer their connectivity issues

@lesanto: "small cell installation reduced churn by almost 50% where connectivity had previously been an issue"

@lesanto: "B2B customers suffering indoor connectivity problems are ready to pay for small cell solutions"

@lesanto: "Orange will launch small cell solutions to the UK market in summer 2012"

@danieldotfox: In Portugal, #Orange cam charge over €1000 for a B2B femto. Wow.

@stewartbaines: Orange study: 80% of business customers ready to churn if their coverage issues are not addressed. #SCWS2012. Similar to Alcatel research...

@SmallCell_Forum: Orange: PT, FR, Romania B2B femtocells launched, 2 more countries to be launched (UK, Be) by end 2012 #scws2012 plus Poland next year

@stewartbaines: Small cells can be basis for location-based services. Stop the dumb pipe!

@lesanto: "what's next? Femtocell as a service for small operations..

@lesanto: "what's next: femtocell and other techs within a small cell - leverage indoor coverage solution for location based services"

@Ubiquisys: What's next for B2B femtocell solutions? Here's @orange's outlook





@lesanto: why are Orange concentrating on B2B for small cells? Could it be the cost? I can't see many consumers paying $1500 a pop!

@lesanto: but Orange haven't ruled out bringing small cells to the consumer...

@dmavrakis: Orange believes that SMBs that have coverage problems are willing to pay €1500 for an access point.

@stewartbaines: Orange France enterprise femtos cost 1500 euros. But you do get a visit from an engineer. I thought they were plug & play?

@lesanto: next speaker : Martin Guthrie - head of business development - NEC

@lesanto: MG "small cells are beautiful"

@lesanto: "the world is getting smaller, so are macro cells"

@lesanto: "smaller and smaller cell sizes are an inevitability along with the technical and cost benefits they bring"

@lesanto: " many small cells advantages : better coverage, greater capacity gain, higher density coverage"

@lesanto: "business case benefits of small cells are not fully understood"

@Ubiquisys: The elephant in the small cells room is dichotomy between vendors: "look at our tech" & operators: "how can we make money?" @NEC

@lesanto: "benefits: reduced customer churn : increased customer acquisition : reduced cost of new macro deployment : "

@lesanto: " more benefits: leverage presence of mobile operator in the home : Increased ARPU "

@Ubiquisys: "Integration with operators' existing network and system is key" @NEC

@lesanto: technical and marketing support is essential when deploying small cells - choose your vendor carefully!

@lesanto: "make sure that your small cell solutions use advanced & adaptive radio management technologies that won't interfere with macro"

@lesanto: Next speaker : Mark Gallagher Principle Engineer, Cisco

@lesanto: "mass adoption of the mobile internet is going on right now - scaling to meet this demand is the challenge"

@Ubiquisys: The next speaker is Mark Gallagher of @CiscoSystems "Defining the New Normal"

@small_cells: "usage patterns in mobile internet are as important as the size of use"

@disruptivedean: Watching Cisco at #SCWS2012 . Think that it's underestimating % of smartphone data that goes via WiFi, only small % of which is offload

@small_cells: "network densification is required : small cell development = highly dense topologies"

@Ubiquisys: "Network densification is required. Small cell deployment = highly dense topologies" @CiscoSystems

@small_cells: "you must use all the spectrum assets available to you"

@small_cells: globally available data sources can be incorporated into RF planning tools to give a clear picture of where to add small cells

@small_cells: "you need a simple, scaleable small cell solution that's properly managed"

@small_cells: "there is significant revenue potential in the small cell business model" -- think beyond simply making savings

@small_cells: "Small cells really are the new norm"

@Ubiquisys: London hotspots map shows usage, including tweets & Flickr photos, identifies small cell deployment locations.

@Ubiquisys: Small cells future built around growing penetration of mobile internet. Take learnings from adjacent markets.

@Lance_Hiley: #ciscosystems shows geolocation tool to identify potential #smallcellsdeployment locations using #flicker and #twitter uploads

@small_cells: "small cells are splitting into two categories : capacity and coverage"

@small_cells: "how can we cope with the data tsunami that's coming at us?"

@small_cells: "the cost difference between a small cell and a macro is large"

@Ubiquisys: Joe Madden of Mobile Experts on Small cell economics and time-to-market

@small_cells: "with data growth doubling every year you really need to plan ahead to cope"

@Ubiquisys: Data growth in US will not be uniform. Most data is consumed in downtown metro areas.

@small_cells: "imagine if it was your job to find sites for 28,000 new macro masts per year to cope with data demand!"

@Ubiquisys: Balanced solution = towers in the rural areas, picocells in urban areas.

@stewartbaines: Joe Madden: It worries me that operators are talking small cells only for LTE. You need a balance (small + macro)

@lesanto: "operators are not keeping up with the data curve, I don't see them spending enough capital to keep up with demand"

@lesanto: "I think we're going to fall behind data demand in a serious way in 2015/2016"

@Ubiquisys: Operators won't be able to keep up with data demand. Be ready to ship millions of picocells in next few years.

@lesanto: "when customers want to use more data than they can get we'll have unhappy customers and that means churn"

@disruptivedean: HIghly questionable supply/demand curve at #SCWS2012 that doesn't cover impact of pricing & policy management constraining "demand"

@lesanto: "those unhappy customers will force operators to make choices they hadn't previously wanted to make for economic reasons"

@stewartbaines: Joe Madden: be ready to ship millions of small cells, whether cheapest or not, by 2015

@lesanto: "we are projecting high numbers of small cells because of time-to-Market issues..."

@lesanto: The #London2012 olympics throws up a real challenge for mobile operators - small cells are already installed for the event.

@danieldotfox: #O2UK has 100 small cells within the London area.

@Ubiquisys: Currently on stage, Robert Joyce of Telefonica. Case study: delivering small cells into the heart of central London

@SmallCell_Forum: O2 says "small cells are the only way" for future capacity, even factoring on extra spectrum and LTE-A.

@lesanto: "2g hotspots aren't in the same place as 3g hotspots so replacing existing 2g small cells for 3g cells won't always bring results"

@danieldotfox: #O2UK really like 'open' femto cells. Interesting!

@lesanto: O2 bid on access to street furniture, street lamps etc, in order to use them to provide wi-fi and small cells

@lesanto: BUT, once O2 had the poles they discovered the councils wanted planning permission for each and every lamppost installation...

@stewartbaines: O2: 400 individual planning applications required to deploy metro wifi in Kensington and Westminster. Ouch!

@lesanto: O2 also had to considerer the form factor of the installations, London lampposts are not suitable for big set upis!

@lesanto: O2's London network is fed both 'over the street' and 'under it' - using a mix of masts, cells and fibre...

@lesanto: O2's mobile network plan for London aims to serve a Gig per Km2

@lesanto: O2 have 12 access points for mobile in Trafalgar Square alone

@lesanto: You lot should see just how complex serving mobile to the streets of London is. Remember this next time you complain about signal

@lesanto: Olympic village buildings are clad in aluminium for heat retention - this also locks out mobile signals!

@lesanto: the result is the Olympic village has become probably the densest installation of small cells anywhere...

@SmallCell_Forum: O2 have deployed 1200 femtos in a in an apartment block for some 'very healthy people' (!) in London for this summer

@lesanto: O2 want to use their Olympic experience to roll out small cells elsewhere - but say the price has to come down!

@joelpagot: @wendyzajack nice pic! #smallcells also come in "green" (low-power mobile devices)




@Ubiquisys: Here's a prototype solar powered small cell. Interesting concept.




@joelpagot: @Ubiquisys Good example for #GreenICT #smallcells big impact: more capacity for less

@SmallCell_Forum: After announcements by O2 and Orange today, is UK first market in world where all operators have publically announced femtocells?

@thinksmallcell: O2 deployed 1Gb/s per square kilometre capacity onstreet 3G/WiFi in London using Small Cells - believe will meet forecast demand

@Lance_Hiley: Telefonica's Rob Joyce forecasts 1Gb/s per km #backhaul requirement for London #smallcells by 2015.

@disruptivedean: @Lance_Hiley Quite astonishing to think that 1sq km use of mobile data in 2015 is only equivalent of a single FTTH broadband cnxn

@markc_reed: “@thinksmallcell: O2 deployed 1Gb/s per square kilometre capacity in London using Small demand #SCWS2012” what about install & bhaul cost?

@lesanto: Manish Singh CTO of Radisys is now on the stand

@Ubiquisys: @radisys: Over the next three years, which sources of disruption will have the greatest impact on mobile operators?

@disruptivedean: Radisys survey at #SCWS2012 shows operators still think "good user experience" = seamless WiFi authentication & handover. Very wrong indeed

@Ubiquisys: You need a portfolio of products to address different segments. Requirements are evolving, so flexibility is a must. @radisys

@thinksmallcell: 46% of operators surveyed said logistics and deployment model were barriers to rapid small cell rollout - Radisys survey

@danieldotfox: #O2UK state that 1Gbit per square kilometer is needed for sufficient outdoor data capacity within 2015 timeframe. Crikey.

@Ubiquisys: NGMN Alliance's Julius Robson is talking about small cell specific backhaul requirements

@lesanto: The relentless growth of data consumption - can we handle it? http://smallcells.posterous.com/the-relentless-growth-of-data-consumption-can via @small_cells

@Ubiquisys: Deployment prerequisites for small cell deployment: unserved demand, suitable site, backhaul connectivity #NGMN

@Ubiquisys: Small cell devices are more visible than macros and need to be small, light, touch safe and tamper proof

@stewartbaines: Wilson Street post from #SCWS2012: Orange or Vodafone taking best approach to femtos? - http://www.wilson-street.com/2012/06/scws2012-femtocells-pile-them-high-and-sell-them-cheap-or-keep-them-for-the-most-valuable-customers/

@lesanto: Somewhat technical this presso... not eminently tweetable see "security of LTE backhauling" white paper by ngmn - http://www.ngmn.org/uploads/media/NGMN_Whitepaper_Backhaul_Security.pdf

@Ubiquisys: Small cell backhaul connections are viewed as untrusted and may need IPsec encryption

@lesanto: "backhaul is a key enabler for small cells, but there is uncertainty around which solutions are suitable"

@Ubiquisys: Backhaul white paper is available at http://www.ngmn.org/fileadmin/user_upload/Downloads/Technical/NGMN_Whitepaper_Small_Cell_Backhaul_Requirements.pdf

@lesanto: The streets of London are paved with small cells #SCWS2012 http://smallcells.posterous.com/the-streets-of-london-are-paved-with-small-ce via @small_cells

@Lance_Hiley: Availability of #smallcells can be relaxed in hotspot deployment scenario says Julius Robson, editor of @ngmn_alliance Whitepaper

@lesanto: since the show started this morning we have seen 5% growth in the industry as two major mobile operators have adopted small cells

@SmallCell_Forum: France & UK first countries globally where all mobile operators have announced femtocells.

@lesanto: majority of South Koreans using LTE networks by 2014

@lesanto: South Korea enjoys one of the highest adoptions of high speed networks in the world

@lesanto: SK telecom launched the world's first LTE + wi-fi femtocell network in 2011

@lesanto: SK telecom is preparing for the PETA byte era - which is next year! 1 PETA = 10 to the power of 15 bytes.

@stewartbaines: @lesanto Key thing about the petabyte era, is SK Telecom will has 1 petabyte PER DAY on their mobile network.

@lesanto: Small cells can provide extended coverage at lower cost

@lesanto: "For interference mitigation in small cell deployment, a central interference management system is being developed"

@Ubiquisys: Nick Karter of @qualcomm will now talk about the convergence of 3G, 4G and wifi

@lesanto: "the growth in data traffic is outstripping the ability to put new spectrum on the market" (say it again)

@lesanto: "there is an increase in operator provided wi-fi"

@lesanto: "wi-fi is already a small cell but without all the features you expect from a mobile network"

@lesanto: "Hotspot 2.0 - converging the wi-fi and cellular networks"

@lesanto: "people use cellular primarily for email and facebook, while they use wi-fi for youtube"

@lesanto: "optimising power consumption is critical when combining so many functions into one box"

@lesanto: "you need a good application processor to manage the network efficiently"

@lesanto: providing mobile data is extremely complex - it's a typical swan swimming scenario, serene above the surface, mad action below it.

@Ubiquisys: Need for RF coordination with coexistence of Wi-Fi and LTE. Optimising power limitation is critical. @qualcomm

@lesanto: "security is obviously very critical to a mobile network"

@lesanto: "Hotspot 2.0 - the mission is to make wi-fi connectivity (of mobile devices) as seamless and easy as cellular"

@danieldotfox: The #Qualcomm approach to multiradio/multi spectrum type access points looks good. Mixed in with Hotspot 2.0. Smart thinking.

@Ubiquisys: Manish Gupta of Symmetricomm: Timing and synchronisation for small cells

@Ubiquisys: Small cells defined: Residential, Enterprise, Metro. What is the distinction?

@Ubiquisys: Panel discussion coming up at #SCWS2012: Backhaul challenges for small cell deployment

@Ubiquisys: Rural environment small cell deployments vary wildly. Any data connection is better than zero in many remote areas

@lesanto: rain can degrade mobile network performance. They call it 'rain fade' - #WhoKnew? see: http://searchmobilecomputing.techtarget.com/definition/rain-fade

@LisaGCisco: Multi-operator white label small cells might be a solution to the complexity and cost of multiple public small cell networks

@Ubiquisys: "GPS is great, but make sure you have a back up" #SCWS2012 panel

Day 1 Summaries:



DAY 2

@Ubiquisys: First speaker this morning : Matthew D Brown, Marketing Product Manager, Femtocell, Optus Australia

@lesanto: Matthew Brown Marketing Product Manager Femtocell, Optus Aus. "delivering femtocells to market isn't just about technical aspects"

@stewartbaines: Optus: coverage is still the massive factor in acquisition and retention in Australia

@small_cells: Matthew is treating us to a case study on marketing femtocells to the challenging Australian mobile market

@small_cells: "we decided to include the additional benefit of unlimited calls in a femtocell tariff"

@LisaGCisco: Optus 3G Home Zone provides a value add with unlimited calling according to Optus Product Manager Matthew Brown

@small_cells: Optus consumer marketing video promises 5 bars of mobile signal and unlimited calls - a dual message

@small_cells: Optus marketing strategy was to lead strongly with coverage message and value proposition of tariff

@SmallCell_Forum: Optus Australia: unlimited femtocell voice calls cheaper than a latte

@small_cells: "we managed to mitigate the negative effect of it seeming like they were paying for coverage, hence the unlimited calls package"

@small_cells: "our initial commercial pilots taught us about the big challenge of integrating the femtocell with a variety of different modems"

@small_cells: "this product needs a seamless deployment, it must just plug and play - the consumer is short of patience with set up"

@stewartbaines: Optus: key to residential femto success...5 bar coverage AND differentiated (free standard national) calling from home

@small_cells: Optus have a lot of useful experience with consumer femtocell deployment, it's well worth learning the lessons they've learned!



@stewartbaines: I never realized my femto should be 1m away from my WiFi. You learn something new everyday!

@small_cells: "customers really enjoy the benefit of the connectivity, they absolutely love it - the challenge is how to price that service"

@small_cells: Great presentation from Matthew, lots of useful practical information from the Optus femtocell experience

@stewartbaines: Optus: next steps is presence-based apps and further differentiated pricing.

@stewartbaines: Optus: we're looking for presence-based apps/services for femtos. Anyone got a case study?

@small_cells: next speaker : Xiaojia Liu, Deputy General, Manager of Technology, China Unicom

@small_cells: "wireless network evolution is ongoing"

@small_cells: "more than 40 launches of the LTE network and 200 more commitments"

@small_cells: "LTE-A requires a 1gbs downlink"

@small_cells: "limited coverage of macro sites will become a very big problem"

@small_cells: Service Development Trends: Phones once used for voice call and SMS - now various uses and services including HD TV.

@Ubiquisys: As smartphone use grows, user habits have changed. There are now billions of 'always-on' customers

@small_cells: "40 - 60% mobile calls taking place indoors" leading to connectivity and capacity issues

@small_cells: "densely populated areas lead to more interference between installed femtocells requiring better interference handling technology"

@small_cells: "two deployment scenarios: Hotspot scenario and rural scenario - both requiring different solutions"

@Ubiquisys: Dense scenario is more suited to #China. Need a flexible, intelligent interfence coordination method #Chinacom

@small_cells: "main objective scenario : coverage (for) holes and hotspots"

@small_cells: "one objective of small cells is to minimise CAPEX and OPEX"

@Ubiquisys: Broadband resource, cost per unit and construction complexity should be taken into account in deployment #Chinacom

@small_cells: "small cells seem more flexible and give more choices for operator deployment"

@small_cells: "small cells bring more: higher capacity, better micro-offload, enhanced user experience"

@small_cells: "with small cells we can do more"

@stewartbaines: Is China Unicom suggesting handover between individual HeNBs?

@MarcianoGilbert: China Unicom: 2 small cells rollout scénario: Hotspot (close, semiopen, open for M2M use) & rural; Wifi + Cellular in tandem.

@Ubiquisys: Operators could provided new types of revenue-generating services in small cell development

@SmallCell_Forum: China Unicom: Small Cell Forum has important role in standardisation, comms, cooperation and IoT testing for small cell evolution

@LisaGCisco: Xiao Han China Unicom underscores key role of Small Cell Forum in increasing industry adoption through standardization and IOT

@MarcianoGilbert: China Unicom 10 provinces for precommercial network in small cells #ALU @SmallCell_Forum @Alcatel_Lucent

@lesanto: *very* detailed presentation from China Unicom - hope the slides are available for careful study later...

@SmallCell_Forum: China Unicom: X2 interface is a key component for managing interference in LTE: welcomes news that SCF is working on X2 interop

@small_cells: Next speaker: Mike Schabel - VP LightRadio, Alcatel-Lucent "Metro Cell : Thinking outside the box"

@small_cells: MS "I'd like to share our experiences with introducing LightRadio"

@small_cells: "there is a lot to extract from spectral efficiency - 1x or 2x capacity improvement"

@small_cells: "operators continue to lobby for more spectrum, including adding wi-fi"

@small_cells: "but we really need to look at spatial efficiency - outdoor metro cells are a part of that efficiency"

@stewartbaines: ALU: spectral efficiency can get 1.5x more capacity. Spatial efficiency can get 10x more capacity

@small_cells: we'll have an expanded number of nodes, as many as tens of thousands - and they could be anywhere

@small_cells: "but the box is probably the smallest part of the picture that needs to be solved"

@small_cells: "we have recognised just how important the beyond the box solution is"

@small_cells: "there's a large number of deployment challenges that need to be solved"

@small_cells: "ecosystem partners are likely to change, the whole value chain is up for grabs again"

@small_cells: "we need to talk about the box, I can't escape talking about the box"

@small_cells: it's important that the box is modular to meet the challenges of multiple deployments

@small_cells: "the box is in the public eye so we focussed on the look of the box"

@small_cells: "everything but the kitchen sink has to go into this box"

@small_cells: "you have to be careful about the design of the box, pay attention to details like heat dissipation"

@thinksmallcell: ALU 70% data traffic offload is the tipping point for commercial viability of a dedicated small cell carrier.

@thinksmallcell: ALU recapping that spatial efficiency (small cells) essential to meet forecast capacity growth of 25x

@stewartbaines: No silver bullet for metrocell backhaul. "I can't keep up" says Schnabel, ALU. Need every possible option

@thinksmallcell: ALU forecast 10x growth in cellsites for metro cells. OPEX more significant than CAPEX

@thinksmallcell: ALU explaining MetroDock - pluggable radio cards for compact metrocell. Is this the "radio blade server" for city lampposts?

@small_cells: "Backhaul : No silver bullet - requires comprehensive options"

@stewartbaines: If you can hang a Christmas light, can you really hang a metrocell?

@small_cells: "Site selection: no longer about RF positioning. Need to balance site availability, power, and backhaul"

@thinksmallcell: ALU claim to have automated design tool balancing RF location, backhaul and power for commercially viable best fit for#metrocells

@Alejandro_Avren: ALUH site acquisition major challenge for metrocell deployment..scramble has already begun

@small_cells: "what's not practical is to find an ideal site with no backhaul, that won't solve the problem"

@small_cells: "installation & commissioning a massive challenge, must design the product to make it easy to install without high-skilled labour"

@small_cells: "we have been going through and learning a tremendous amount of lessons with LightRadio"

@thinksmallcell: ALU saying they fully support X2 interface which would facilitate multivendor #HetNets

@small_cells: Next speaker : Will Franks CTO and co-founder of Ubiquisys

@small_cells: "smart cells is a hot topic in the industry"

@small_cells: "small cells serve 4 locations : Home : Enterprise : Urban : Rural "

@small_cells: "data wasn't the original driving factor it was voice quality and capacity"

@small_cells: "Now we are in the post data revolution era"

@small_cells: "we talk about metro cells on lampposts but 70% of mobile data is consumed indoors"

@stewartbaines: Ubiquisys: enterprises femtos are 1/4 cost of picos and DAS. Good news as most enterprises don't have DAS or picos due to cost

@small_cells: "rural backhaul is very costly, femto based technology with satellite backhaul speeds up rural deployment"

@small_cells: "small cells - a 7.7billion dollar opportunity!"

@small_cells: "one of the great things about metro indoor is there are a lot of sites - the real hotspots are indoor"

@small_cells: "50,000 public access small cells deployed - 200,000 open access femtocells deployed"

@Ubiquisys: Will Franks: Ubiquisys has 50k metro indoor small cells deployed around the world, mostly in Asia

@small_cells: "example Metro indoor hotspots stats: 90% of phones are smartphones : data to voice ratio is 10:1 : 10,000 data session in 24 hrs

@small_cells: "data dominated by chatty smartphone apps - signalling procedures per UE in busy hour - up to 50 users"

@Ubiquisys: Will Franks: traffic is dominated by data/signalling. Data is dominated by chatty smartphone apps. Users are highly transient.

@small_cells: "transient users - ave 7 mins in cell - different profile to wi-fi users who tend to dwell longer"

@small_cells: "cafe hotspot : people get their coffee and immediately fire up their browser or social network"

@small_cells: 'Map' of cafe hotspot cell usage shows data data data - lots of chatter but very little talking!

@Ubiquisys: Will Franks: small cells cover specific areas where traffic is heavily correlated

@small_cells: "challenges are not data use but cell overload, camp-on attempts, data vs signalling"

@small_cells: "our aim is zero touch deployment, making it as simple and as hands off as possible"

@Ubiquisys: Will Franks: The challenge for public access hotspots is no longer about headline data rates or call capacity

@small_cells: "hotspot robustness : these cells are 100% utilised in busy times and have to be able to manage themselves"

@small_cells: "smart cells are about extending the cloud to the edge of the network"

@small_cells: "why smart cells : it's about user experience"

@small_cells: "smart cells provide high-speed, short-range signal with low contention"

@small_cells: "Ubiquisys teamed up with Intel to put a comms-tuned compute platform in a small cell to make a smart cell"

@small_cells: "there are no standards issues with smart cells at all"

@Ubiquisys: Will Franks: Smart cells = small cell + hi spec server + clever apps

@small_cells: "proactive and predictive cache used to cut backhaul traffic - improves user experience"

@theshipster: Ubiquisys Will Franks: In Japan, small cells, with satellite backhaul, take rural coverage deployment time from 1 yr to 1 day

@small_cells: "more smart cell applications: cellular - wi-fi policy management : video / ad server : CDN clients : "

@Ubiquisys: With proactive smart cell caching, first play of a video plays from cloud, subsequent of same file play from cache

@small_cells: "small cells come in many flavours : home femtocells, enterprise small cells, metro indoor, metro outdoor and rural"

@Ubiquisys: Smart cells: optimise end UX, optimise backhaul performance, offer new edge cloud apps for service products

@MarcianoGilbert: Colt on stage promoting new business model managed femto services or How MVNO can distribute femto as a service

@Ubiquisys: Femto as a Service (FaaS) from a fixed service provider can accelerate deployment in buildings. Len Schuch of Colt

@small_cells: "enterprises have to embrace BYOD and Colt certainly are"

@Ubiquisys: FaaS opens the door for more mobile operators to deploy small cells

@small_cells: "demand and supply - don't believe the data crunch is a myth"

@small_cells: "near-time data growth has exceeded the value of last years Cisco VNI analysis"

@small_cells: "it's not just background data and email it is about delivering QoS"

@small_cells: "by 2016, 70% of data will be video"

@small_cells: "it's not 75kbps per sub spread over 6h it's 10Mbps per sub in 30s bursts"

@small_cells: "you can deliver high quality with low throughput but as soon as throughput increases you loose QoS"

@small_cells: "it's generally the backhaul which is the limit to throughout..."

@MarcianoGilbert: New thermodynamic demo on stage . After PV=NRT you have macro + small cell * hetnet = high QoS*high throughput

@Ubiquisys: Here's a slide visualising that smart cell proactive caching capability




@thinksmallcell: ip.access say X.2 interface isn't sufficient for purpose today. It needs to be for true multi vendor #HetNets

@small_cells: Speaker now is Hiroyuki Hosono Radio Access Network Development Dept at NTT DoCoMo

@small_cells: NTT DoCoMo already rolling out LTE products

@small_cells: by last March 30% Japanese population could access LTE, that'll be up to 70% by end of 2012!

@Alejandro_Avren: By end of 2012, NTT will cover 70% of population with LTE coverage

@small_cells: Japan will have almost total LTE coverage by end 2014

@small_cells: NTT DeCoMo have already signed up 2.2 million LTE subscribers and expect to hit 10m by end of 1q 2013.

@small_cells: "NTT DeCoMo see two main advantages for LTE femtocells : expanded coverage and traffic offload"

@small_cells: "approx 12 x data growth expected between 2011 & 2015 - we need to satisfy that future traffic demand"

@small_cells: "we will develop femtocell networks to help meet future data demand" NTT DeCoMo

@thinksmallcell: NTT DoCoMo forecast 12x mobile data traffic growth between 2011-2015. LTE #femtocells essential

@small_cells: "we may limit data speed of heavy users" NTT DeCoMo

@Alejandro_Avren: BH Telecom: more smart phones sold last year than PCs

@small_cells: "in 2011 more smartphones than PCs were sold"

@Ubiquisys: The number of smartphones sold exceeded PCs last year. In a few years the no of smartphones will dwarf PCs. #BHTelecom

@Ubiquisys: We are watching Adnan Hatalasevic talking about business solutions and synergy design for small cells and Wi-Fi

@small_cells: Next speaker Steve Price, Gen Manager, Comms and Infrastructure division, Intel

@small_cells: "I'd like to talk about building intelligence into the overall network"

@small_cells: watching a 'what happens in one internet minute video' ....http://techbullets.blogspot.co.uk/2012/06/internet-in-one-minute-intel.html



@small_cells: "mix of social networking and mobile users has changed the way we work and socialise. Now think ahead to 2015"

@stewartbaines: Here is that Intel internet minute infographic:



@small_cells: "what kind of network do we need for 2015 when there will be twice as many connected mobile devices as today?

@small_cells: "if done correctly you can increase revenue and decrease operating expenses"

@small_cells: "small cell base stations redefine HetNet economics"

@small_cells: "what is a smart cell? All small cells have some intelligence but now we are taking Intel's datacentre skills to the operator"

@small_cells: "the consumer with a mobile intelligent device can upload as much as he downloads, networks have to be symmetrical"

@small_cells: "we believe smart cells need massive storage abilities and high performance CPUs"

@small_cells: "smart small cells allow you to take advantage of value added services and offer better user experience"

@small_cells: "putting intelligence in a device increases cost, so we wanted to determine the economic benefits of smart small cells"

@small_cells: "we found there was a reduction in network operating costs of 22% when using smart cells, mainly from backhaul savings"

@Ubiquisys: Smart cells are more expensive than standard small cells, but fewer are needed to accomplish the same results @intel

@small_cells: "Summary business case findings: Improvements are seen in OpEx savings, specifically, in network OpEx"

@small_cells: "smart cells help with operator bottom line, beyond capacity and coverage"

@small_cells: "local caching and filtering eliminates peak hours overload"

@Ubiquisys: Conclusion: Smart Cells help with operator bottom line, beyond capacity and coverage @intel

@small_cells: we are in the midsts of a very exciting time in mobile comms - and the smart small cell is a key aspect of this revolution

@small_cells: "even Moore's law can't keep up with where the networks are going"

@small_cells: "silicon alone can't solve the thirst for bandwidth"

@Ubiquisys: Doug Pulley of @mindspeed is now talking about small cell architecture for RAN evolution

@small_cells: Next speaker : Doug Pulley - CTO Wireless, Wireless Business Unit - MindSpeed

@small_cells: "Small Cell Networks - Taking the strain - how many small cells to cover London - or the world!"

@small_cells: "Cell Traffic Dimensioning - what does it really take to overwhelm a cell?"

@small_cells: "internet video will be driving much of future mobile data traffic"

@small_cells: "is there a busy hour? most reports show traffic usage is fairly constant from 8-8"

@small_cells: "people are consuming data via multiple devices, my kids use three simultaneously - I don't know how they do it!"

@small_cells: Mindspeed's study suggests a London wide small cell network with over 71,000 base stations --- and 19 million needed worldwide!

@thinksmallcell: Mindspeed research study estimates global need for 19,059,612 small cells globally to meet Cisco VNI data traffic forecast

@small_cells: "all this detail helps specify and build the best small cell SoC solutions"

@small_cells: Next speaker is Viraj Abhayawardhana Specialist Strategy at BT talking about backhaul...

@small_cells: "BT provides fixed backhaul to all major mobile operators in the UK"

@small_cells: "BT Openzone has the biggest WiFi footprint in the UK. 16 wireless cities in the UK. 4 million UK hotspots"

@small_cells: "BT investing £2.5b extending fibre infrastructure close to home"

@small_cells: "Small Cells: How to identify sites, how to acquire sites, how to manage sites cost effectively, how to manage teams & field force

@small_cells: "street lamps came out top for small cell location"

@small_cells: "to reduce backhaul we must reuse as much capability as possible so we must try to leverage the fibre roll out"

@small_cells: "backhaul isn't just about access it's all about integrating, building an end to end OSS is a significant cost"

@SmallCell_Forum: BT: "Comedy and small cells: it's all about the timing"

@small_cells: "small cells have challenges in sites, backhaul and power - and costs have to come down"

@small_cells: "to solve backhaul problems, end to end service delivery and maintenance should be considered"

@Ubiquisys: Now in the conference room: OMA and @SmallCell_Forum cooperation - new enablers for new enhanced apps, from @telecomitaliaTw

@Ubiquisys: Digital use case at home: The Home wakes up and is aware of owners' presence, and gets adaptive to them! @telecomitaliaTw

@Ubiquisys: Shopping mall use case: Device tells you "Your favourite green ties today discounted" @telecomitaliaTw

@Ubiquisys: Now up at #SCWS2012, Yoav Volloch from @Broadcom: 3G/4G/5G multi RAT small cells

@Ubiquisys: Licensed vs Unlicensed: LTE enjoys better frequency bands, while Wi-Fi supports carrier aggregation @broadcom

@Ubiquisys: Broadcom believes a small cell is a multi RAT access point that manages the entire spectrum over a given cell range

@Ubiquisys: The business model for open access femtocells can be the same as ‘selling power to the grid’ @Broadcom

@Ubiquisys: Small cell solutions were born due to the practical need to increase 3G license spectrum capacity @broadcom

@Ubiquisys: Small cells are not low cost Macro cells; they have their own personality@Broadcom

@Ubiquisys: The final session of the day - a panel on new technologies reshaping the business case for small cells

@Ubiquisys: We get very hung up on presence + location aspect, but a valuable app is getting flat-rated local calls in coverage area

@stewartbaines: should enterprises get free at-desk mobile calls if they have a femto? And what of PBX integration?

@stewartbaines: Operators should think of the commercial value of presence & location from small cells

@Ubiquisys: @SmallCell_Forum asked consumers 'what apps would you pay for?’ Many were excited about having a home phone network

@Ubiquisys: #SCWS2012 in pictures http://ubiquisys.com/small-cells-blog/small-cells-world-summit-2012-in-pictures/ - Is that you I see?

Day 2 summary blogs



Small Cell Forum 2012 Award Winners


Day 3


@small_cells: First Speaker - Andy Sutton, Principal Network Engineer at Everything, Everywhere.

@small_cells: "small cells could be interpreted as anything non-macrocell"

@small_cells: "two different scenarios : capacity or coverage?"

@small_cells: "Femto provides in-building coverage for voice services"

@small_cells: "Public Access external small cells for capacity"

@small_cells: "we anticipate supporting voice as well as data on our public access small and pico cells"

@small_cells: "we're likely to see an improvement in spectral efficiency"

@small_cells: "if we deploy a 3g solution today we want to see an evolution path to LTE"

@small_cells: "on average we look at small cells costing 1/10th the cost of a macro"

@small_cells: "key performance indicators should ideally be the same as the macro network"

@small_cells: "you could open a new area of coverage and this is a different scenario to simply adding capacity to an existing hotspot"

@small_cells: "small cells are a game changer in terms of how we architect networks"

@small_cells: "both LoS and NLoS have a part to play in small cell backhaul"

@small_cells: "backhaul could be fully integrated with macro network or completely decoupled with an overlay (underlay) solution"

@small_cells: "we will see small cells rolled out in volume to support mobile network evolution"

@small_cells: "small cell sites must have a very low TCO in the region of 10% of that associated with macro sites"

@small_cells: "several backhaul solutions will be required to meet all likely deployment scenarios"

@small_cells: "reducing latency could be a significant battleground in the LTE market"

@small_cells: Yoshihito Shimazaki Deputy Division Head, from Softbank

@small_cells: Yoshito will talk to us about the status of LTE small cells

@small_cells: "in Japan data usage is crazy"

@thinksmallcell: everything everywhere say 3G metro cells will gain real traction during 2013. Expects dual carrier 3G before LTE

@small_cells: "What is the key to mobile market up-growth -- Market share : ARPU improvement : Market Value Improvement "

@small_cells: "four competition elements to win: 1 Network 2 service 3 charge rate 4 customer service "

@small_cells: "number of Softbank base stations: 190,000 -- excluding home femtocells"

@small_cells: "by May 2012 Softbank had deployed 121,850 home femtocells, the figure continues to rise"

@small_cells: very dense deployment of small cells in metropolitan Tokyo

@small_cells: "outdoor cell sites cannot cover all indoor areas in downtown Tokyo"

@small_cells: "femto to macro handover is very important to indoor"

@thinksmallcell: SoftBank almost completed trial of handover from inbuilding Femto to macrocell. Improved abnormal call drop rate by 3.5%

@small_cells: "we got the number one tv commercial by deploying the white dog"

@small_cells: "smartphone data traffic is 10X more than a feature phone"

@small_cells: "mobile network traffic will grow 12X from FY2010 to FY2016"

@small_cells: "Tokyo data use is very crazy, I can't believe it"

@stewartbaines: SoftBank: mobile distribution in Japan. Check out the Tokyo spike





@small_cells: "we are deploying a multi-layer cell architecture"

@small_cells: "we need a very strong co-operative interface coordination"

@small_cells: current speaker : Jang Ahn Kwon Chief Marketing Officer & VP, Contela Inc.

@thinksmallcell: korea has >50% smartphones, 7M LTE subs today, 14M by end 2012. Competition is fierce

@thinksmallcell: LTE congestion in Korea came sooner than expected

@small_cells: "home small cell needs to be dual mode to support 3G and LTE for legacy handsets"

@thinksmallcell: Korea residential femtocells need to be dual mode 3G and LTE say Contela. Not everyone in a family will have LTE handsets

@thinksmallcell: Contela achieved 60Mbps downlink and 25Mbps uplink performance on their LTE femtocell field trials

@small_cells: Current speaker : Jie Zhang - Ranplan "small cell deployment in heterogeneous networks"

@small_cells: Fascinating coverage mapping slides from Jie Zhang - graphically illustrating coverage benefits of small cell deployment

@small_cells: "Intelligent Cell Optimisation (ICO) shows where small cells should be located"

@disruptivedean: After listening to comments at #SCWS2012 , I think that some forms of carrier WiFi will make sense outdoors. But indoor proposition trickier

@small_cells: it seems European homes are better at blocking mobile signals that US homes...

@small_cells: "providing better coverage throughout the entire home gets the whole family on the operator's plan"

@small_cells: "does it work? does it really offer long lasting value to the subscriber and operator"

@small_cells: current speaker is "Michiel Lotter, VP of Engineering Nextivity Inc.

@small_cells: "95% of customers who installed cel-fi remained with operator (as opposed to churning away)"

@small_cells: "50% of mobile users worldwide don't have access to broadband, meaning femtos are not an option"

@small_cells: Next speaker: Andy Germano Vice Chairman Small cell Forum

@small_cells: "why small cell service? 5 bar indoor coverage"

@small_cells: "small cells allow for application sweetspot"

@small_cells: "small cells can help deliver the intelligent home"

@small_cells: "small cell networks can help deliver location based services"

@small_cells: "small cells enable shopping 2.0"

@small_cells: "8 different demos of small cell enabled apps going on at recent small cell forum"

@small_cells: "consumers want small cell services and are willing to pay"

@Alejandro_Avren: Sunrise Switzerland now on the main stage, presenting their project status on their femtocell deployment

@small_cells: "Sunrise is under pressure to constantly add capacity, enhance the user experience, & keep a lid on total cost of ownership"

@Alejandro_Avren: Sunrise: 16 time data usage increase expected by 2017, doubling every year until 2014!!

@small_cells: "avoid problems- avoid low price users eating up too much capacity : maximise utilisation of spectrum : deploy smart wi-fi offload

@small_cells: "the congested 3g cell rate is increasing whereas the footprint of the congested cells remains the same"

@small_cells: "demanding environmental factors in Switzerland will favour the use of small cells"

@small_cells: "Sunrise will continue to use the femto and is ready for wide-spread deployment"

@small_cells: "main purpose: to deliver cost efficient object special coverage to compliment macro base station portfolio"

@small_cells: Sunrise will "continue to use femto as a retention and business enabler tool"

@small_cells: "fair use policies reduce levels of data use growth temporarily but they cannot reverse the skyrocketing demand for mobile data"

@small_cells: "small cells vendors need to support SON for HetNet as well as an effective small cells management"

@small_cells: next speaker: Jean-Christophe Nanan, RF systems engineer at Freescale - small cells call for scaleable architecture

@small_cells: Final speaker is Joseph Byre Analyst at the Linley Group

@small_cells: "Mobile bandwidth is increasing"

@small_cells: UK is depressingly blue on a map showing LTE enabled areas in red :0(

@small_cells: "funding for bandwidth increases and alternatives is decreasing, pressuring OEMs and Chip Cos."

@small_cells: "ARPU rising only 3%"

@small_cells: "Base station costs falling from $40K"

@small_cells: "Moore's Law enables cost reduction but heats up competition among chip companies"

@small_cells: "to defend or capture share, chip companies are rushing in to supply base station processors"

@small_cells: "the opportunity for system vendors is an opportunity for chip factors"

@small_cells: "markets tend to ramp later than expected but ramps tend to be bigger than forecast"

@small_cells: "market drivers for femtocells are problematical"

@small_cells: "shipment growth has only just begun - enough data to define a trend?"

@small_cells: "vague plans by major operators to deploy"

@small_cells: "causes for concern - technology dynamics: ..."

@thinksmallcell: NEC's outdoor metrocell. Looks pretty solid and durable to me. Believed to be Ubiquisys technology inside.



Day 3 Roundups



FINAL Roundups


Thanks to all those who tweeted and made this article possible. Credit to the following people

@lesanto = Glenn Le Santo
@stewartbaines = Stewart Baines
@thinksmallcell = David Chambers
@Ubiquisys = Keith Day
@LisaGCisco = Lisa Garza
@bmbarnowski = Barney Barnowski
@Alejandro_Avren = Alejandro Piñero
@MarkBLHenry = Mark Henry
@disruptivedean = Dean Bubley
@SmallCell_Forum = Small Cell Forum
@danieldotfox = Daniel Fox
@vodafoneNZ = Vodafone New Zealand
@dmavrakis = Dimitris Mavrakis
@small_cells = Small Cells
@Lance_Hiley = Lance Hiley
@joelpagot = Joel Pagot
@markc_reed = Mark Reed
@MarcianoGilbert = Gilbert Marciano
@theshipster = Steve Shipley


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Friday, 30 September 2011

Macrocells or Metrocells?

Just went through Alcatel-Lucent strategic paper on whether to go for more Macrocell sites or rather have Metrocells instead.

A good description of Metrocells is available in the document:

Metro cells, the latest evolution in small cells, are based on the same low cost femtocell technology that has been successfully used in home and enterprise cells, but with enhanced capacity and coverage. With higher processing and transmit power, the first generation of metro cells is engineered to serve from 16 to 32 users and provide a coverage range from less than 100 meters in dense urban locations to several hundred meters in rural environments. However, unlike home and enterprise cells, metro cells are owned and managed by a MSP and typically used in public or open access areas to augment the capacity or coverage of a larger macro network.

Available in both indoor and outdoor versions, metro cells are plug-and-play devices that use Self-Organizing Network (SON) technology to automate network configuration and optimization, significantly reducing network planning, deployment and maintenance costs. While indoor versions use an existing broadband connection to backhaul traffic to a core network, outdoor versions may be opportunistically deployed to take advantage of existing wireline or wireless sites and backhaul infrastructure, such as Fiber-to-the-Node (FTTN), Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH), Very-high-speed Digital Subscriber Line (VDSL) street cabinets, and DSL backbone.

Since metro cells use licensed spectrum and are part of the MSP’s larger mobility network, they provide the same trusted security and quality of service (QoS) as the macro network. With seamless handovers, users can roam from metro cells to the macro network and vice versa. Metro cells also deliver the same services as the macro network (for example, voice, Short Message Service (SMS), and multimedia services), and support application programming interfaces (APIs), that may be used for developing new, innovative services. In short, metro cells promise to be the ideal small cells for network offloading.

For more details on the whitepaper see: http://www.slideshare.net/zahidtg/metro-cells-whitepaper