Friday, March 30, 2007

Tropos Picocells take on WiMax Macrocells

Tropos Picocells take on WiMax Macrocells

Another approach to broadband wireless coverage in dense urban areas.


Sprint argues that Long Term Evolution (LTE) will be two years ahead of UMTS LTE.

They are right and that opens the door for WiMAX, apart from the issue of backwards compatibility and spectrum availability.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Sprint to Launch Samsung Femtocell (Phone Scoop)

Samsung this week announced the "UbiCell" - a femotcell product - in both CDMA and WCDMA versions. Femtocells are cellular base stations the size of a wi-fi access point that provide cellular coverage in the home. Sprint is currently wrapping up a trial of the CDMA UbiCell, and plans to launch it in early 2008, according to Samsung. A WCDMA version for America is planned for trials in 2008. The UbiCell connects to the carrier's network via a home broadband connection (DSL or cable.) Phones must be authorized to use the femtocell - meaning the signal is not available to guests or neighbors - although up to four authorized users can use it simultaneously. The CDMA version supports both 850 and 1900 bands, plus EVDO and seamless handoffs to towers on the main network. Users can travel with the UbiCell and use it wherever there is power, broadband, and their carrier has licensed spectrum. A GPS system ensures it does not operate in areas the carrier is not licensed.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Motorola Participating in 25 WiMAX Trials Worldwide

Motorola announced today it has nine contracts for the installation of 802.16e WiMAX networks and is taking part in 25 trials with the technology worldwide, confirming the growth of WiMAX especially in emerging markets. Motorola now has WiMAX trials and deployments underway in six continents.

The newest Motorola WiMAX trial agreement is with TVA, a multi-services operator in Brazil, which will conduct a trial for the use of mobile WiMAX technology (802.16e) in Rio de Janeiro. The solution will cover central Rio and part of the south of the city, providing wireless broadband services with voice, data and multimedia capacity for a select group of users.

The WiMAX platform, including use of the 2.5 GHz spectrum in line with Anatel regulations, enables rapid digital inclusion, as well as an opportunity to provide multimedia (voice, data and image) services. By digitalizing its MMDS (Multipoint Multichannel Distribution System) network, TVA is able to expand its service offering, creating a new model for competition.

In the agreement, Motorola will supply its wi4 WiMAX access points and end user equipment. WiMAX 802.16e permits indoor installation of customer premises equipment without line of sight to the radio base stations, ensuring high user service capacity. The technology also permits high data rates and a wider range of coverage than other currently available technologies.

The trial period will enable TVA to assess the performance of the technology in the differentiated demographic topology of the city of Rio de Janeiro, as well as the mobile TV, video, VoIP, and media streaming services and data applications.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Ericsson promises 3G data speeds over GSM - 23 Mar 2007 - IT Week

"Ericsson Edge Evolution builds on 3GPP's industry standardisation of agreed technology improvements, and reflects Ericsson's prediction that the current trend towards Edge-capable GSM networks and terminals is set to continue," Ulf Ewaldsson, vice president at Ericsson, said at this year's CeBIT tradeshow.

EDGE Evolution, see my research brief at

Ericsson gives up on WiMAX

Mikael Persson, strategy and business development in Ericsson's Networks business unit is due to deliver a presentation titled "WiMAX, Why Indeed?" at the conference, being held in Dubai 16-17 April, and in the programme notes for the event Ericsson states: "Ericsson has chosen as of December 2006 to discontinue development in WiMAX infrastructure. This presentation will outline some of the key areas Ericsson considered before choosing to abandon this technology in favour of HSPA (high speed packet access). Specific areas for discussion include; historical lessons learnt around establishing a standard to achieving the mass market growth, comparison of physical performance of WiMAX versus HSPA and finally some poignant questions as to the commercial viability of WiMAX, given the ongoing success of HSPA and the needs this platform can deliver to, for operators, developers and end users alike both now and in the future."

Ericsson has just shot itself in the foot with this decision. Or has it?Could it be that LTE is so close to WiMAX that they are interchangeable?

Friday, March 23, 2007

Telmex launches WiMAX service

Telmex Chile has launched its WiMAX network in 15 towns and cities across the country. The network, based on the 802.16e-2005 standard for fixed, nomadic and mobile usage in the 3.5GHz frequency band, uses Alcatel-Lucent's 9100 WiMAX end-to-end solution. The company is initially targeting SMEs with the service, which will include fixed wireless telephony and broadband connectivity. Telmex hopes to expand the service to five more cities in coming weeks and by the end of 2007 expects to have covered 91% of Chile's municipalities. The service starts at CLP19,900(USD37.12) per month.

Airspan Commits to the Future — WIMAX

Airspan Commits to the Future — WIMAX

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

NEC and Kineto Partner on Femtocell Market

NEC’s UMA-enabled Home Gateway Solution enables mobile operators to deploy a complete end-to-end femtocell solution, from the femtocell CPE to the supporting core infrastructure, which is comprised of the NEC Home Gateway Network Controller (HGNC). Based on Kineto’s industry leading UNC, the HGNC enables mobile operators to leverage the 3GPP UMA standard to securely and cost-effectively support large scale femtocell deployments. The key advantage of the UMA-enabled HGNC is that it interfaces to the operators existing core network with standard IuCS/IuPS interfaces, enabling faster time to market as well as full service transparency for the end user.

Monday, March 19, 2007

ITU set to upgrade WiMAX to 3G classification

IMT-2000 classification would qualify WiMAX for IMT-2000 spectrum allocations at WRC-07, when the 2.3-2.4GHz and 3.4-3.6GHz bands will be considered for inclusion and the 3G community will reportedly be asking for 1.7GHz of new spectrum.

Fixed WiMAX is now deployed in Europe at 3.5GHz, while the 2.3GHz and 2.5-2.6GHz bands are used for mobile WiMAX. The latter band comes under IMT-2000’s auspices and has until now been earmarked as 3G-expansion spectrum.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Ericsson Baffled By Vodafone CEO’s WiMax Over LTE Talk

Ericsson today expressed surprise at Vodafone chief Arun Sarin’s willingness to consider WiMAX instead of LTE for the next phase of its technology evolution.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

EDGE to Reach 1Mbps in 2009

Today Ericsson announced that it expects to make its 1Mbps EDGE Evolution network upgrades available by 2009. EDGE Evolution is a software upgrade for the existing EDGE data network hardware that runs on GSM networks. EDGE Evolution devices will be capable of data rates as much as 300 percent faster than current EDGE systems. This means that GSM device users will be able to enjoy connections of up to 1Mbps in speed - similar to those currently enjoyed by users on CDMA EV-DO and WCDMA 3G networks.

Ericsson claims that it supplies its EDGE equipment to over half of the 196 EDGE networks that are in use throughout the world today.

This is an important milestone in bringing GSM networks closer to 3G data speeds.

Monday, March 12, 2007

FMC from Orange

In a briefing, Orange told us that it had sold 100,000 Unik phones in France, as of the end of February. Unik customers' voice traffic at home has been multiplied by 3.

Unik is a fixed-mobile convergence (FMC) service for voice, based on dual-mode WiFi/cellular phones, which provide unlimited voice at home (or in small enterprises). Unik is available to customers subscribing to an Orange mobile postpaid contract and an Orange fixed broadband access. Unik comes as an option on top of the mobile plan, at €10 or €22 per month.
The industry is slowly getting its act together on spectrum coordination for WiMAX


The key objective of the WiMAX Spectrum Owners Alliance (WiSOA) is to accelerate the acceptance and deployment of interoperable WiMAX networks through a coordinated global effort.

World's First WiMAX Roaming Agreement Established - Mar 09, 2007 - Digital Communities

Members of the WiMAX Spectrum Owners Alliance (WiSOA) have signed the world's first WiMAX roaming agreement, and formed a partnership with MACH Sarl and Trustive BV, the world's leading providers of roaming services.

The agreement and partnership is the crucial first step in what will provide for seamless "GSM-like" roaming amongst WiMAX networks, and roaming partnerships with global WiFi and 3G networks -- expediting the rollout of interoperable WiMAX services worldwide.

The key objective of WiSOA, a global organisation composed exclusively of owners of WiMAX spectrum, is to accelerate the acceptance and deployment of interoperable WiMAX networks through a coordinated global effort.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Clearwire IPO raises USD600m towards WiMAX rollout: CommsUpdate : TeleGeography Research

US wireless ISP Clearwire has raised USD600 million from an initial public offering (IPO). The firm sold 24 million shares at USD25 each, giving it a market capitalisation of USD3.9 billion. Founder Craig McCaw is still Clearwire’s largest shareholder following the sale, with other investors including Intel and Motorola. The proceeds from the IPO will be used to help fund Clearwire’s rollout of mobile WiMAX wireless broadband technology; it currently offers wireless internet services using proprietary equipment from its former subsidiary NextNet Wireless, which was acquired by Motorola last year. Clearwire currently offers wireless internet services in 34 US markets where it has attracted more than 180,000 subscribers.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Alcatel selected for WiMAX rollout: CommsUpdate : TeleGeography Research

Chunghwa Telecom has selected Alcatel-Lucent to roll out Taiwan’s first 802.16e mobile WiMAX wireless internet network. The new system will be deployed in Taoyuan county as part of the government’s M-Taiwan project to increase broadband penetration in underserved areas. The equipment vendor's 802.16e WiMAX equipment is expected to receive full certification from the WiMAX Forum later this year. The partners says the network will be used to deliver services such as VoIP telephony and remote medical access. While several WiMAX networks are being rolled out in Taiwan under temporary trial concessions, six full regional licences are scheduled to be awarded within the next few months.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Operators to Invest $18 Billion in UMTS Long Term Evolution Networks by 2014

Long Term Evolution (LTE) of 3G technologies is about to benefit from Rel-8 of the 3GPP standard, planned for the third quarter of 2007. This will be the trigger for development of components and systems to provide 100 Mbps download speeds to mobile devices. According to a new study from ABI Research, network operators will invest a total of almost US$18 billion in LTE capital infrastructure over the period to 2014.

This will yield a significant payoff, both in reduction of operating expenses and in the creation of new revenue from IP-based services.

"LTE faces competition from other broadband wireless technologies and it will need to demonstrate clear technical and economic advantages to convince network operators," says ABI Research analyst Ian Cox. "WiMAX has a two-year lead over LTE but suffers from not being backwards-compatible with current 3G technologies. LTE will not only be backwards-compatible with UMTS but is likely to be used to upgrade CDMA networks as well. But the industry is also working on HSPA+, which could offer the same performance in a 5MHz bandwidth. Without additional spectrum, operators face a difficult choice."