Saturday 28 October 2017

Covering Australian Mobile Not-spots

Came across this Quora question recently, "Is Australia much bigger than it appears on the map?". The answer surprised me because Australia is as big as USA or China and is 3.5 times bigger that Greenland but in the map that certainly does not show up. With a population of just 23.2 million, it's definitely bound to have loads of not-spots.

Telstra's 4G small cells are connect Queensland's mobile blackspots, but lack of coverage is still common. The problem with low power small cells sometimes is that the coverage area can be very small. In this particular case its less than 300 metres.

Optus is another operator committed to spend AU$1 billion to in regional and rural Australia to eradicate mobile blackspots, improve overall mobile coverage outside the big cities and help future proof the networks for data-hungry applications like video streaming.

It's the biggest network investment in the company's 25-year history and will fund:

  • 500 new mobile sites across regional and remote Australia (including 114 sites built through the government's Mobile Blackspots Program)
  • Upgrades for more than 1,800 sites to go from 3G to 4G
  • The addition of 4G to more than 200 sites (to increase capacity for peak periods)
  • The continued rollout of satellite small-cell technology (bringing voice and data to the remote outback)

I talked earlier about their 3G Small Cells using Parallel Wireless CWS here. The solution also won Small Cell Forum award in 'Excellence in Commercial Deployment of Rural/Remote Small Cells' category along with Gilat for satellite backhaul.

Here is a video showing how users reacted to one of the sites having just been turned on.

*Full Disclosure: I work for Parallel Wireless as a Senior Director, Strategic Marketing. This blog is maintained in my personal capacity and expresses my own views, not the views of my employer or anyone else. Anyone who knows me well would know this.

Wednesday 25 October 2017

Ericsson's Invisible Sites: Urban Case Studies

Small Cell Forum recently hosted Densification Summit in Mumbai. There were lots of interesting talks which can be seen along with the post-event report on SCF page here.

Anyway, the presentation by Ericsson is embedded below.

Wednesday 11 October 2017

Telefónica's LTE Nano Takes to the Skies

From Telefonica's Press release today (translated from Spanish to English via Google translate):
Telefónica has today presented in a real environment the applications in rescue and supervision of the miniaturization of a 4G mobile network with a portable backpack of less than 3kg. which provides voice and data coverage to a group of people in a specific area. 
This innovation project, called LTE Nano and announced at the 2017 Mobile World Congress , is one of the world's smallest deployments of a 4G standalone network as it runs on hardware weighing just 40 grams. It is also a significant step in the advances that the market is making in the development of portable network products very useful in rescue, emergency, retail, logistics, hospitals or offices, among many others. 
Specifically, Telefónica has carried out demonstrations in Real of the application of portable networks 4G in rescue and supervision of critical infrastructures in Buitrago de Lozoya. In both, a LTE Nano backpack has been used that has allowed to deploy in a matter of minutes a network of 4G communications to which a dron has been connected with capacity to transmit video through LTE and several smartphones and tablets with transmission of voice and data. 
In the case of rescue work, the 4G portable backpack has provided coverage of voice and data communications to a rescue group. A dron with an HD camcorder has streamed what was seen during the flight and has transmitted it to the devices of the operations in real time by the 4G provided by the backpack. In this way, for example, the location of a missing person is facilitated and accelerated in places that are not accessible. 
The same service can be provided in the supervision of infrastructures that are difficult to access, both in communications and in any other industrial field, involving tasks of a certain complexity and risk and time consuming. In this case, the use of a 4G dron has been shown for the monitoring of the old satellite communications monitoring antennas of Telefónica in Buitrago de Lozoya which, with its 30 meters in diameter and placed more than 40 meters high on a infrastructure of several hundred tons, pose a challenge of supervision because of its complexity and risk when an operator has to perform this task manually. 
The LTE Nano solution has been developed in collaboration with the British company Quortus, which is the technology provider that provides the 4G virtual network software solution capable of operating in such small scale equipment. 
On the other hand, the scenarios of using a dron transmitting video through 4G have been developed in collaboration with Accenture Digital , one of the first companies to collaborate with Telefónica in the development of innovative services that operate on 4G portable networks.
Here is a video released alongside with the text above. I wish it had a bit more detail.

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