Our big news this month is that Real Wireless has joined the 5G Innovation Centre (5GIC) at the University of Surrey, taking its place alongside the industry’s biggest names to drive the development and evaluation of 5G. Bringing together leading academic expertise and key industry partners in a shared vision, the 5GIC will help to define and develop 5G infrastructure. Focus will be on developing intelligent systems that work together to give the impression of unlimited data capacity, providing a network that is far faster than today’s 4G system, with greater energy-efficiency and reduced end user costs. Professor Rahim Tafazolli, Director of the Institute for Communication Systems (ICS) and the 5GIC, said that: “With their understanding of both the business and technical challenges of wireless, Real Wireless joins the first wave of SME members of the 5GIC.” Read more.
Wireless architectures to match the built architecture
This month Real Wireless was honoured to join industry leaders at the prestigious Johannesburg Summit 2015. Topics encompassed future thinking on wireless technologies and architectures as the industry moves towards 5G, as well as future user behaviour, requirements, and new business models. We presented Future mobile architectures – Matching technologyto place and people. The big issue here is that even today, the complexity of the real architecture – i.e. the variety of shapes and sizes of buildings in which we live and work - means we can no longer expect one universal radio architecture to perform well & deliver ROI for every use case. And such complexity will only become more challenging. Instead we need a toolkit with many different sizes and shapes of cell to suit every size and shape of building. We concluded that operators need to become more nimble and get closer to end-users, who often understand the value of their needs better than service providers and may even be prepared to invest more for better service delivery. Watch the video.
Small cells are dead – long live small cells
It’s obvious isn’t it? If operator-backed Wi-Fi Calling rolls out, then users can rely upon their home Wi-Fi network for voice calls and there’s simply no need for cellular small cells. In truth this view could only really hold water when talking about domestic environments where femtocells are shipped to ‘fix’ issues with coverage and reduce churn. But small cells have come a long way since the first residential devices, moving into the urban, enterprise and rural sectors to name but a few. Particularly in enterprise environments, Wi-Fi Calling is in reality less of a panacea than it claims to be. Wi-Fi Calling relies upon a stable connection with consistent bit rates and latencies to place calls, something that is a huge struggle in a densely populated, heavily loaded environment for Wi-Fi, operating in unlicensed spectrum. Even large Wi-Fi vendors seem to agree on this point. As is so often the case in debates over Wi-Fi and cellular, co-existence holds the key to best value for both users & service providers. Find out more.
How many flavours of scalable architecture?
Real Wireless loves a focused and well targeted webinar. Which is why we were pleased to join AT&T, CommScope, Ixia and Accedian Networks to consider the future of HetNets. Early deployments have tended to be extremely customised to address very specific and often high profile challenges. But HetNet solutions need to scale to be cost effective as coverage and capacity problems become increasingly prevalent. We know there’s no one-size-fits all solution. But can we identify meaningful and manageable paradigms? Read the webinar summary. Watch the webinar.
Everything you were afraid to ask…
These days small cells come in a plethora of flavours - which is why RCR Wireless came to founding Small Cell Forum Chair and Real Wireless Director of Technology Simon Saunders to bring us all up to speed. Did you know C-RAN-based small cells as a lower-cost enterprise solution than DAS , even when more than one operator is involved? How can outdoor small cells ramp up a carrier’s competitive advantage? Look no further than this RCR feature.
Meet the expert: Mike Goddard – International Spectrum Policy Advisor
Mike Goddard has 40 years’ experience in spectrum planning nationally and internationally in the UK administration. Mike was awarded an OBE in 2008 for services to technology, in recognition of a distinguished career in the public service and representing the UK’s interests internationally.
What’s your background with Real Wireless? I’ve been working as Real Wireless’ International Spectrum Policy Advisor since 2009. Typically my work involves considering where organisations are looking to expand, identifying where there are gaps in their current offering that can be exploited to create this expansion and then developing a strategy for achieving that.
What’s your area of expertise? My main expertise is in the management of radio spectrum, most notably in my previous role as Director of Spectrum and International Policy at OFCOM. I tend to work on the overall framework of spectrum management and how it’s regulated, a very long winded process nowadays that sees lots of my time being spent balancing differing interests and trying to avoid excessive spectrum fragmentation. I’ve also worked in international policy, ensuring spectrum is being made available to usage at an international level.
What are the biggest challenges spectrum faces? The biggest challenge is the same as always, which is needing to plan ahead in everything we do, working out what the world will need from spectrum in 10 years time for spectrum. So the 3G auction might have taken place in 2002, but decisions had to be taken as far back as 1992. What is changing and making this more challenging is that more people are getting involved in the process and increasing the number of decisions that need to be taken at an earlier stage. There are also imbalances in the strength of the voices of differing industries, which can sometimes make it difficult to ensure all users’ needs are being fully considered in any decision.
And finally, a warm welcome…
We’re delighted to welcome two new experts to the Real Wireless team. Len Schuch is a serial entrepreneur who co-founded small cell start-up Ubiquisys that sold to Cisco for $300 million. Len helps strengthen the burgeoning commercial expertise in our business practice. Mark Thomas has extensive senior level experience in spectrum policy. From 2007 to March 2015 Mark was the Director of the European Communications Office, the central office of the CEPT – the association of Europe’s national spectrum regulators.