Small Cells Featured Article
Small Cells and Wi-Fi Combine to Cut Cost, Increase Capacity
November 09, 2012
By Susan J. Campbell, TMCnet Contributing Editor
Mobile operators are fighting to increase data capacity. The demand from customers is inching up every day, and the pressure is on mobile operators to find solutions that appease the customer, but don’t break the bank. Small cells are the solution in many cases.
The combination of small cells and Wi-Fi is actually proving to be the biggest asset of mobile operators, around 46 percent, according to a Pew (News - Alert) report cited in a recent statement. Nearly half of all adult Americans are smartphone owners.
With that statistic alone it’s easy to see how mobile operators have their work cut out for them.
Now think of the number of users out there with iPads and other variations of tablet computers that also rely on a data network, and it’s clear why mobile operators are embracing small cell technology to widen their reach.
Operators are deploying small cells, such as picocells and femtocells, alongside Wi-Fi to deliver their services in high-traffic locations. They’re also able to reach their capacity goals faster by deploying their LTE (News - Alert) and Wi-Fi together in an integrated sub layer of small cells.
This integration method also helps to reduce costs.
In many cases, the total cost of ownership can be as little as 10 percent of what it costs to deploy a macro cell platform. One reason the cost is so low is that by placing Wi-Fi and small cells in the same enclosure, there are fewer sites to manage. Fewer sites for the network operator to maintain means lower costs as well as speedier capacity.
Taqua, a company that provides next generation telecommunications systems and applications, has industry-leading small cell backhaul solutions. These solutions are the answer to issues caused by consumers’ accelerating adoption of devices reliant on mobile data networks.
With the cost of backhaul technologies, many operators have been slow to jump on the small cell train. But Taqua’s (News - Alert) non-line-of-sight (NLOS) backhaul systems (called W-Series) are giving mobile operators a flexible and reasonably-priced alternative to other backhaul solutions.
Taqua uses remote backhaul module through an Ethernet connection that connects small cells from site to site. Mobile operators are able to pair this technology with their existing backhaul network. Taqua’s solution allows several clusters to be managed through a single interface. Each hub has around 60 Mbps of throughput, which allows for significant capacity.
While small cells and Wi-Fi are combining to make the total cost of ownership very attractive to mobile operators, Taqua continues to come up with mobile backhaul solutions that also bring value and cost savings to the table.
Edited by Braden Becker
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