Click here to close now.



Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Xenia von Wedel, Sanjay Zalavadia, Elizabeth White, Dana Gardner, Kevin Benedict

Blog Feed Post

Bringing LTE Indoors

by Andrew Mackay, Manager Mobile Solutions, Cisco Systems

 

As Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks continue to be deployed, it is becoming evident that matching the existing 3G coverage quality is going to be a challenge. This is reminiscent of the early days of 3G, when it took many years to get coverage matching underlying GSM. The higher carrier frequency (2.1GHz) and partial initial overlays left deep indoor coverage with “cold spots.”  This resulted in unreliable calls and increased battery consumption, which led many users to disable 3G out of frustration.  Over time, operators invested in more infill Broadband Telephony Services (BTS), wider use of In-building Systems (IBS) and repeaters, but indoor coverage was only really resolved when 3G on 850/900 MHz was deployed as a coverage “safety net.”

 

In Asia, the majority of LTE deployments are in the 1.8GHz band and higher. As a result, the typical LTE user drops back to 3G (850/900MHz) on a regular basis when deep indoors, commuting, or even inside their home. Initially, the user experience of dropping from LTE to 3G for data services may not be so irritating since voice is still falling back to 3G in the majority of networks. Plus, in many indoor scenarios, good Wi-Fi service is available to fill-in the missing bandwidth. But, ultimately, this is a branding issue: customers subscribing to a 4G service expect that level of service, not to see their service provider icon showing 3G. It becomes an even larger issue when you want to serve your subscriber real-time services over 4G, such-as voice and streaming video. So how do we avoid these service “pot-holes”?

 

potholes.png

“Warning: 3G pot-holes ahead.”

 

Many operators tell me that they will wait for sub-1GHz LTE coverage before considering wide spread VoLTE (Voice over LTE) deployment, but this may take years. Unlike in the US and Europe, the benefits of the digital dividend have yet to arrive at APAC with only live LTE APT700MHz deployments (in Taiwan so far). But even after the networks arrive it will take a while for the majority of devices to support the new band. 3G band refarming isn’t as easy as it sounds either; i.e., how do you refarm from carriers full of voice, which you can’t move to 4G until you have good VoLTE coverage? A classic “catch-22.”

 

One possible solution is to rely on Wi-Fi as a stop-gap measure for voice. Certainly, this approach has been in the press recently with operators 3 and EE in the UK discussing VoWiFi (Voice over Wi-Fi) strategies. In the case of EE, the role of using VoWiFi to plug LTE coverage holes was made explicit: “The aim of VoWiFi is to improve in-building coverage. Calls will be automatically routed via WiFi, for instance, in a user’s home or office, where there is an absence of cellular coverage.” VoWiFi received further attention with the announcement of iOS8 support for Wi-Fi calling on T-Mobile’s USA network.

 

wificalling.png

“iOS8 adds VoWiFi”

 

The challenge I foresee with VoWiFi is providing a “Carrier Grade” user experience. My concern is not with voice quality, which can be maintained in HD on an uncongested access point, but more the limited mobility. At present, as a Wi-Fi signal fades, the client hangs on to the connection despite quality dropping below what VoIP (Voice over IP) requires, before giving up and switching back to cellular. Another issue is variability of up-stream connectivity on different Wi-Fi networks accessed on a typical day. In the case of a work Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN), for example, Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) traffic might be blocked as per the enterprise policy. Both of these issues are critical in the case of terminating calls, where the user may be forced to stay put to complete the call or have the call go straight to voicemail.

I believe Wi-Fi will be an important stop-gap for poor LTE indoor coverage, but, eventually, it should take on the complementary role of picking up the non-real-time bandwidth workload. The ideal end game has to be to provide sufficient LTE coverage and capacity to match (or exceed) the current 3G user experience for real-time services, particularly voice. How this is achieved given the multiple RAN tools available (lower frequency bands, LTE Smallcells, Repeaters, Relays and IBS) becomes a question of time and the best TCO business case, and that’s a whole other topic.

 

To learn more about visit our LTE technologies page, check our Twitter feed @CiscoSPMobility or contact Jacqueline Chan ([email protected]) for more information.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Deborah Strickland

The articles presented here are blog posts from members of our Service Provider Mobility community. Deborah Strickland is a Web and Social Media Program Manager at Cisco. Follow us on Twitter @CiscoSPMobility.

@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Bsquare has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For more than two decades, Bsquare has helped its customers extract business value from a broad array of physical assets by making them intelligent, connecting them, and using the data they generate to optimize business processes.
Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is expected in the amount of information being processed, managed, analyzed, and acted upon by enterprise IT. This amazing is not part of some distant future - it is happening today. One report shows a 650% increase in enterprise data by 2020. Other estimates are even higher....
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - comp...
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
Connected devices and the industrial internet are growing exponentially every year with Cisco expecting 50 billion devices to be in operation by 2020. In this period of growth, location-based insights are becoming invaluable to many businesses as they adopt new connected technologies. Knowing when and where these devices connect from is critical for a number of scenarios in supply chain management, disaster management, emergency response, M2M, location marketing and more. In his session at @Th...
It is one thing to build single industrial IoT applications, but what will it take to build the Smart Cities and truly society changing applications of the future? The technology won’t be the problem, it will be the number of parties that need to work together and be aligned in their motivation to succeed. In his Day 2 Keynote at @ThingsExpo, Henrik Kenani Dahlgren, Portfolio Marketing Manager at Ericsson, discussed how to plan to cooperate, partner, and form lasting all-star teams to change t...
The cloud market growth today is largely in public clouds. While there is a lot of spend in IT departments in virtualization, these aren’t yet translating into a true “cloud” experience within the enterprise. What is stopping the growth of the “private cloud” market? In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Nara Rajagopalan, CEO of Accelerite, explored the challenges in deploying, managing, and getting adoption for a private cloud within an enterprise. What are the key differences between wh...
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportuni...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 19th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world and ThingsExpo Silicon Valley Call for Papers is now open.
There is little doubt that Big Data solutions will have an increasing role in the Enterprise IT mainstream over time. Big Data at Cloud Expo - to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA - has announced its Call for Papers is open. Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is...
In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Lee Atchison, Principal Cloud Architect and Advocate at New Relic, discussed cloud as a ‘better data center’ and how it adds new capacity (faster) and improves application availability (redundancy). The cloud is a ‘Dynamic Tool for Dynamic Apps’ and resource allocation is an integral part of your application architecture, so use only the resources you need and allocate /de-allocate resources on the fly.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life sett...
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to imp...
There are several IoTs: the Industrial Internet, Consumer Wearables, Wearables and Healthcare, Supply Chains, and the movement toward Smart Grids, Cities, Regions, and Nations. There are competing communications standards every step of the way, a bewildering array of sensors and devices, and an entire world of competing data analytics platforms. To some this appears to be chaos. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate a...
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that ReadyTalk, a leading provider of online conferencing and webinar services, has been named Vendor Presentation Sponsor at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ReadyTalk delivers audio and web conferencing services that inspire collaboration and enable the Future of Work for today’s increasingly digital and mobile workforce. By combining intuitive, innovative tec...
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their backend AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT - especially in the connected home and office. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Kocher, founder and managing director of Grey Heron, explained how Amazon is extending its reach to become a major force in IoT by building on its dominant cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strat...
industrial company for a multi-year contract initially valued at over $4.0 million. In addition to DataV software, Bsquare will also provide comprehensive systems integration, support and maintenance services. DataV leverages advanced data analytics, predictive reasoning, data-driven diagnostics, and automated orchestration of remediation actions in order to improve asset uptime while reducing service and warranty costs.
Vidyo, Inc., has joined the Alliance for Open Media. The Alliance for Open Media is a non-profit organization working to define and develop media technologies that address the need for an open standard for video compression and delivery over the web. As a member of the Alliance, Vidyo will collaborate with industry leaders in pursuit of an open and royalty-free AOMedia Video codec, AV1. Vidyo’s contributions to the organization will bring to bear its long history of expertise in codec technolo...