Small cell technology: Managing complexity to meet demand

In this Telecom TV video, Frode Støldal, Chief Technology Officer, Telenor, discusses the factors that are driving demand for small cell technology in mobile networks, as well as the challenges faced by operators as they implement small cell solutions.

He points out that in February, 80 percent of data traffic on Telenor’s mobile network in Norway was generated by people watching the Winter Olympics ­– a perfect example of customers demanding high quality connectivity, everywhere. The only way to meet that demand is through the deployment of small cells.

Telenor deploys about 2,500 macro cells per year, but an operator could need to roll out up to 100,000 small cells to meet escalating demand: Gartner predicts that by 2018, some 25 percent of all traffic from smart devices will go to small cells. Clearly this requires massive scale in terms of backhaul, power supplies and new site acquisitions – and huge operational complexity due to the need to integrate and coordinate network assets.

This all means very careful planning, standardization and interoperability to ensure small cells are viable, and that they deliver efficiencies and economies, as Støldal discusses.

In our new TM Forum report, Network Planning and Optimization by Tolaga’s Phil Marshall, we also explore the practicalities and potential of small cell technology further. We:

  • Examine how mobile service providers are responding to the pressure to increase network capacity and improve customers’ experience by introducing LTE, small cell overlay technology and heterogeneous network design;
  • Explain what SON is and what the difference is between centralized and distributed models;
  • Discuss advanced LTE capabilities and the challenges of deploying small cells;
  • Look at how NFV and SDN support automation in cellular networks;
  • Assess the significant market potential;
  • Recommend best practices for network planning optimization.

Download it now.

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    Freelance Writer and Editor

    Sarah is a freelance writer and editor with an interest in new technologies and how they impact our everyday lives.

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