From the monthly archives: "August 2011"


I just want to complain a little. An analyst called Mobile Experts is offering a fee based study that shows North American operators will invest $260M in filters and TMAs. I don’t have any complaints with the free enterprise of mobile-experts. Yes, to me this is a depressing report. My problem is, is the FCC truly creating jobs here in the US or are all of these TMAs and filters now made elsewhere? If here, then I guess it’s a jobs policy that I should clam up about. The policy being establishing new frequency bands without regards to neighboring interference (or grandfathering old spectrum from modern emission masks.) This is a real mess at 700MHz and there are other hot spots. Anyone thinking GPS->LightSquared? Anyway FCC, can’t we just update the neighboring band requirements when we go for the Billion$ in auctioning off spectrum?





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 Hello femtocells!

So last week was super busy for me and I was meaning to come back to this announcement that I saw from ip.access. As we all know claims of zillions of femtocells, are like the we’re all going to be choking in wireless data claims that went for like a decade before we stopped rolling our eyes at the iPhone…(and then again maybe only from the rear view mirror), but nonetheless, the calls from these market analysts for 10s of millions of femotocells to be deployed by now have not really happened. I’ve tried to help, I have 2 femtocells at my home, a VZW CDMA/EVDO and ATT WCDMA unit but not so common. So back to the point, ip.access has passed the 500K mark, which is not surprising, to me, but they are sort of claiming the largest femtocell deployments in the world. I can tell you that this is not true but I cannot not tell you more than that. Nonetheless, there it is. 500K unit milestone, they expect 1M in 2012.

 Good job ip.access!

 Links: ip.access,

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Airspan announced the release of a pretty good piece of technology for the LTE network deployment puzzle a few days ago, their Air4G. The key things here are that it is a physically small outdoor package, capable of both WiMAX and LTE. The primary thing that caught my eye was as an LTE eNB it features 2×2 MIMO (Single User [SU] and Multi User [MU]!), built in 2x 40dBm TX power, support for 700MHz and the ability to connect a Remote Radio Head (RRH) with a CPRI connection for more RF power! Arghh!  Overall if they can reasonably offer these, make the sale and provide decent support for these boxes, this should be a hit for them.

Links: Airspan 

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 Don’t you love jargon as much as I do? I hope so or you are reading the wrong stuff my friends. Headline sort of says it all…From their PR I gather that Harris develops a BeON P25 VoIP client for Public Safety to PTT their brains out over LTE. Spoiler alert! P25 is APCO project 25 standards (which I won’t describe here) and PTT is Push to Talk. Guessing that VIDA is not just their 4.9GHz radios but something akin to an IMS  too.

Now, I don’t think this means the HTC Thunderbolt has a Android BeON PTT client, so I actually don’t know what they are performing this PTT with on LTE, but it can’t be very much more complicated than that, can it? Full glory after the break… 

On the other hand maybe so because they also mention that this could be helpful in the enterprise…How close is this to VoLTE I wonder?

Link: Harris,

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I generally try to stay away from simply repeating what’s on every news page, blog etc on the planet at the moment. What I will instead make some commentary about is the position these guys are in and why LTE Advanced. Maybe it’s more like stream of consciousness but there’s only so many hours in a day….

It all started many moons ago at Nextel, following the Sprint acquisition, the fusion occurred after throwing in some explosive ingredients like Morgan O’brien, and Barry West a supporting cast like the Sprint management team, in a small space and well, the fusion reactions begin with the decision to deploy WiMAX 802.16 (TDD)

 with all of the weird 2.5 spectrum, under the banner of Xohm…. (Yes, I waaay oversimplify but you get the general gist.)  Of course we have the whole Craig McCaw angle with the ClearWire startup and their management team including John Saw etc… that started down a similar path starting with their original Motorola Canopy system, switching to WiMAX with their Sprint joint activities, and ending in their merger with Xohm 

to form Clear.At this point you have a startup company with oodles of spectrum at 2.5GHz, a fair number of launched markets with 802.16 (TDD), and so far lots of debt and not millions and millions of subscribers. Clear’s decision to deploy LTE Advanced in TDD mode sort of is harmonious with their existing 802.16 networks as they share similar bandwidths and requirements to use multiple antennae. Sprint even did some legwork for them with a full out RFP to select 3 OEMs that could provide CDMA/WiMAX and LTE in the same base station. This cleared the path technically for Clear to theoretically upgrade their existing (newer) base stations to support LTE as an additional carrier.

This buys them a more certain future with respect to devices of course as the world seems to be moving towards LTE and away from WiMAX.


Now competitively this was a very logical move since their wholesale partner, Sprint, as I mentioned, is also on the path for upgradable base stations to provide LTE on their own plus they have some funding for the upgrade since they did a wholesale (two way) deal with the satellite LTE provider Lightsquared.


Clear has announced they plan to deploy 120MBps service so this means roughly 20MHz with 4×4 MIMO will be allocated to the task. (Wow, Add that to their existing WiMAX carriers and that is some serious backhaul required at each site…if each sector supported 20Mbps of WiMAX and 120Mbps of LTE, then 360Mbps per site ideally…) There are few operators capable of 20MHz allocations in a single band so they do have a competitive edge in this area if they can figure out the backhaul.

Source: Clear

Full PR after the break…

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Yesterday, the FCC reached cross border 700MHz agreements with Canada and Mexico. This is really probably accelerated for the Public Safety uses of the spectrum but we all will benefit. Good job FCC. Full PR after the break….

Links: FCC.GOV

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So with respect to Sierra Wireless the PR in and of itself is not really surprising. What caught my eye was not the fact they have certified a device

for a network with a launch date in the far future (ATT) but they definitely have 2 devices, one for each network. That should put to rest any unrest regarding roaming and using a single device. This is a coup for these large operators, but not very economically efficient for the rest of us. Remember, ATT owns spectrum in the lower 700MHz, like A, B, C depending on the market, starting at 698MHz (UL), whereas VZW has the hill, 


upper 700MHz Channel C, 746MHz (UL.) Since these are so far away from each other, and there is the channel 51 interference issues that plague the lower 700MHz bands, devices are designed, at present, for one block or the other. This too shall pass…


The situation…

Links: MarketWatch, Sierra Wireless

I’ve been super busy lately, but I’ve been meaning to delve into this announcement more deeply. Unfortunately there’s not really a lot of information out there other than a PDF file available (after the break.) Basically this DIDO proposal is for wireless clients to connect to wireless access points, but with a customized waveform, computed at a datacenter, designed to maximize throughput in a given area. This boils down to an interference mitigation strategy but I’m not sure that this is the way that Rearden Labs would like for you to think of their ultimate technology. To me, I also don’t believe this has been fully thought through, but there is a portion of the idea that is interesting to me. This interesting part is where a data center manages the waveforms. It’s not practical but interesting. 

This is nitpicky but the author of the paper clearly either doesn’t understand wireless technologies with the numerous incorrect references or doesn’t care to engage anyone that knows anything and is only focused on selling. Anyway I do applaud the out of the box thinking.

Links: Rearden Companies

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