Over the past ten years mobile communications have transitioned from a luxury item to a utility as critical as electricity and water. With this rapid expansion of subscribers and services, the operators of the wireless networks are making money today and adding subscribers at rapid rates. India for example has growth between 20% and 30% year over year growth in mobile subscribers.
However, this very success incorporates the seeds of potential predicament as those subscribers begin anticipating, hard and eating ever-expanding quantities of data over those comparable networks. 3G networks-from the RAN structure to the synchronous transport-had been designed basically to enhance larger voice capacity with a modicum of data enhance. They were by no means intended to beef up the multiple teraby way oftes being deliveryed as of late. HSPA and HSPA+, whilst surely providing improvements, are still sure through the 3G structure and may also be thought to be mere band-aids versus long run solutions.As operators eye the unbelievable expansion and therefore strain on their networks, they will have to contemplate the question: when and the way do I make the move to 4G? It’s now not a question of ‘if’, however more a query of “when” and “how”.
It’s Not a Technology Decision, It’s a Business Decision
With all the claims being thrown about over how many megabits per second can be achieved with WiMAX and LTE, there is a tendency for operators to get caught up in the technology hype. This can be a dangerous position. While technology is relevant, it should not determine the driving criteria by itself. When it comes down to how many bits/second/Hz WiMAX or LTE can provide, fundamentally they are both limited by physics. Both technology camps use the same techniques to enhance capacity and an objective apples-to-apples comparison delivers similar performance.
Other parameters that should be considered before making a decision of WiMAX vs. LTE need to be considered. Each of the following questions and considerations has a major impact on the eventual success of the operator’s business case:
> What frequency band will be used for the network? Is it a standard band for either technology?
> Will you need to make a cutover to 4G or do you have enough spectrum to do an overlay a la Verizon and ATT with their 700MHz holdings?
> What services are being targeted? Do your subscribers look for basic email and internet access or will they be driven by high bandwidth applications like Streaming Video, Video Conferencing, Online Gaming?
> This in turn will determine what types of devices will be used on your network. Just phones? Data dongles? Laptops with connectivity built in? Will Machine to Machine be a part of your device strategy?
> These two factors will in turn drive capacity. One of the key changes for operators is the shift from the network being coverage limited to being capacity limited.
> An operator must determine if data roaming is something their subscriber base is expecting. This in turn can be broken down to a question whether local roaming on competing local networks is more important than roaming internationally.
> Probably the most difficult decision to make is the question of when to make the move. The timing of the move must be done carefully, as it has the potential to have severe negative impact to the bottom line if handled poorly at the wrong time.
Whether the operator is thinking about moving from 3G to WiMAX, 3G to LTE, or even WiMAX to LTE, they wish to increase “transitional industry cases” and be capable to see the financial impact of this type of transition. in the end all of the components stated above need to be regarded as and factored into a industry style where transparent monetary results may also be predicted.
Business Case for a Transitional Network
Taking into consideration the elements indexed above, integrating such technical parameters as terrain and equipment performance, and deriving the relevant financial effects are not easy duties. the right business style will permit the operator to regulate Key functionality indicators (KPI) and notice the speedy have an effect on at the funds. The WiROI instrument from wireless 2020 is simply this sort of instrument and has been used to lend a hand operators with decisions this sort ofs this in over fifty networks around the world.
The instrument contains technical performance of a given seller’s gadget, components in market and subscriber information, applications, units, and more-as much as three hundred enter parameters-to deliver full and whole monetary projections. With the WiROI instrument, an operator can compare all three transitionsmentioned previously:
> 3G to WiMAX
> 3G to LTE
> WiMAX to LTE
The result is a user-driven GUI with detailed financial numbers that can be used to help in this critical decision of what, and maybe more importantly, when to move forward. Figure 1 shows the results for a TD-LTE deployment in Malaysia. This depicts the results of a WiMAX license holder deploying TD-LTE in partnership with mobile carriers.
Making the Call
The rise of cellular knowledge is simple. you may argue how a lot information a 3G community can improve and whilst it’ll run out of capability, however ultimately the 3G community will run out of steam and the operator shall be required to transition to 4G. With the “fight” between WiMAX and LTE expanding with on a daily basis, the rhetoric from each camps is in complete swing. For an operator lately running a successful 3G community, sifting throughout the competing claims will also be daunting. it is easy to get misplaced in what number of dB right here or tright here this or that gadget can deliver.
But in any case the decision through an operator must be made from an integrated trade and monetary viewpoint. As this resolution will have a some distance-achieving impact on the viability of the operator, it is imperative that they have got all the knowledge at hand. with the ability to type varying strategies and together with the factors defined above are essential for an operator in an effort to have trust within the anticipated effects. while this is definitely one of the largest determination an operator has to make, it does now not should be done blindly. using gear comparable to WiROI can assist in making this decision with eyes extensive open and whole wisdom of the totality of doable affects-from the minor problems to an important ones.