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Category Archives: LTE

Small-Cell Power Amplifier Family

Power amplifiers optimized for WCDMA, HSPA, and LTE small-cell applications are available from ANADIGICS, including picocells, enterprise-class femtocells, and high-performance customer premises equipment (CPE).  The AWB7122 and AWB7124 operate in the 1805 MHz to 1880 MHz and 728 MHz to 768 MHz band, respectively, delivering integration and good performance to help manufacturers develop compact wireless infrastructure solutions that consume less power and provide higher throughput with greater coverage.

By offering a broad portfolio of high-performance ¼-Watt and ½-Watt linear power amplifiers optimized for 3G and 4G frequency bands, ANADIGICS enables wireless network equipment manufacturers to meet this infrastructure challenge.

The AWB7122 and AWB7124 power amplifiers provide 16 percent and 14.5 percent efficiency, respectively, to minimize power consumption and offer greater flexibility in the choice of network power sources.  Both the AWB7122 and AWB7124 deliver linearity of -47 dBc ACPR at +24.5 dBm output power and 30 dB of RF gain to provide higher data rates with a greater coverage area.  The power amplifiers are available in a 7 millimeter x 7 millimeter x 1.3 millimeter surface mount package with integrated RF matching to reduce PCB space requirements.  www.anadigics.com

DISH, Ntelos Test LTE-to-the-Home

It’s easy to find people that don’t trust DISH Network’s Charlie Ergen, but it’s hard not to get titillated by some of the technology plays that he brings to Sprint and Clearwire. To Sprint, he brings a multimedia package – mobile and fixed video, voice, and data. Additionally, his company brings a fixed-broadband wireless play using spectrum in the 2.5 GHz band, which would complement the spectrum holdings of both Sprint and Clearwire.

The week, DISH and nTelos Wireless, a rural wireless provider, announced the commencement of a fixed broadband wireless test in rural Virginia using LTE technology, with speeds ranging from 20 Mbps to more than 50 Mbps.

As part of the demonstration, two wireless tower test sites were activated in the Blue Ridge Mountains near Waynesboro and Afton, Va. BandRich ruggedized outdoor routers with built-in high-gain antennas were installed on the roofs of the homes to receive the signal. Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent provided equipment and assisted in the installation.

The final story has yet to be written of the DISH/Sprint/Clearwire/Softbank merger-palooza. But with a significant portion of households in rural America underserved by wireline broadband, a fixed wireless LTE solution just might find a home in the country, no matter who provides it.

DISH Press Release

DISH, Ntelos Test LTE-to-the-Home

It’s easy to find people that don’t trust DISH Network’s Charlie Ergen, but it’s hard not to get titillated by some of the technology plays that he brings to Sprint and Clearwire. To Sprint, he brings a multimedia package – mobile and fixed video, voice, and data. Additionally, his company brings a fixed-broadband wireless play using spectrum in the 2.5 GHz band, which would complement the spectrum holdings of both Sprint and Clearwire.

The week, DISH and nTelos Wireless, a rural wireless provider, announced the commencement of a fixed broadband wireless test in rural Virginia using LTE technology, with speeds ranging from 20 Mbps to more than 50 Mbps.

As part of the demonstration, two wireless tower test sites were activated in the Blue Ridge Mountains near Waynesboro and Afton, Va. BandRich ruggedized outdoor routers with built-in high-gain antennas were installed on the roofs of the homes to receive the signal. Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent provided equipment and assisted in the installation.

The final story has yet to be written of the DISH/Sprint/Clearwire/Softbank merger-palooza. But with a significant portion of households in rural America underserved by wireline broadband, a fixed wireless LTE solution just might find a home in the country, no matter who provides it.

DISH Press Release

OpEx to Overtake CapEx by 2015 — U.S. LTE Forecast

As network build outs begin to taper off and subscribers take up LTE devices, carrier operating expenditures will surpass capital expenditures by 2015 according to a report released by iGR Market Research last week.

“Most of the largest U.S. operators are already well advanced in their LTE network rollouts,” Iain Gilliott, president and founder of iGR, wrote in a press release. “Others may lag behind, but LTE deployments overall are still progressing quickly – perhaps more quickly than could have been foreseen 12 to 18 months ago.”

The major operators have been investing capital expenditures in LTE over the last two to three years and now as their LTE subscriber base is growing, they are incurring increased LTE operating expenses, according to the report.

Based on the anticipated rapid growth of LTE subscribers and data traffic on the networks, total U.S. LTE infrastructure OpEx projected to be $57.4 billion, while CapEx is expected to be only $37.7 billion between 2012 and 2017.

“Operators are striving to provide sufficient coverage to be competitive and sufficient capacity to meet the needs of the growing subscriber base, while minimizing unnecessary CapEx and OpEx,” said Gillott. “This report clearly shows there remains a limited amount of time for significant CapEx expenditures in the U.S. LTE infrastructure market, and that the operators’ LTE OpEx levels will overtake LTE CapEx levels in two years.”

Samsung Tests ‘5G’ WirelessTechnology

The greatest thing about wireless technology is also the most maddening thing about it, at least from the carriers’ viewpoint.  It marches continually forward. Never resting on its laurels. Before one generation of wireless is completely rolled out, the next one enters the technology pipeline, while carriers struggle to get their return on investment.

True to form, before 4G is even completely deployed, Samsung Electronics is already talking about the next big thing, to borrow a line from its commercials. The company announced that it has successfully developed a fifth-generation wireless technology, based on an adaptive array transceiver technology, which will boast transmission of up to several hundred times faster than current 4G networks.

Samsung’s 5G technology transmits data in the millimeter-wave band at a frequency of 28 GHz at a speed of up to 1.056 Gbps to a distance of up to 2 kilometers. Using 64 antenna elements, the adaptive array transceiver technology is designed to overcome the radio propagation loss at millimeter-wave bands.

“The millimeter-wave band is the most effective solution to recent surges in wireless Internet usage,” said Chang Yeong Kim, EVP, Samsung Electronics. “Samsung’s success…has brought us one step closer to the commercialization of 5G in in the millimeter-wave bands.”

At the projected speeds, Samsung’s 5G technology would allow users to transmit massive data files including 3D movies, games, real-time streaming of ultra-high-definition (UHD) content and remote medical services.

Jake MacLeod, Gray Beard Consulting, told AGL Bulletin that bringing 5G communications in the Ka band was “a big jump ahead.”

Research and development of 5G mobile communications technologies, including adaptive array transceiver at the millimeter-wave bands, will take seven years. Commercial product introduction is projected by 2020.

The term, “5G,” is only being used for marketing purposes, because the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) has not approved a standard, according to MacLeod.  But Samsung’s role of being the first manufacture to market is an important one, he added. Samsung’s latest innovation is expected to invigorate research into 5G wireless and trigger the creation of international alliances for the long and involved standards process.

“From a historical perspective, this is very positive, because it puts pressure on other manufacturers to begin serious development in this area,” MacLeod said. “They don’t want to see a competitor jump out ahead of them. This is very good for the wireless industry.”

The competition for technology leadership in next-generation mobile communications development is getting increasingly fierce, according to Samsung.  China established a government-led “IMT-2020 (5G) Promotion Group” for 5G research in February 2012, while the European Commission also plans to invest 50 million Euros in 2013 to bring 5G services to the market by 2020.

The process of evolving from one generation to the next is hardly simple or clean cut. For example, the 4G LTE standard was proposed by DoCoMo in 2004 and it wasn’t until 2008 that the ITU set a standard, which called for 100 mbps for mobile and 1 gigabit per second.

“It is a long process that is required for global standardization. It takes years,” MacLeod said. “It goes through a huge negotiation process to hammer out what the technology is going to look like.”

After five years, LTE systems are still not operating anywhere near the levels specified by the LTE standards, according to MacLeod.

“We are still working out the bugs within the ITU spec for 4G,” he said. “We still have sub-generations within the 4G LTE that are not easy to deploy. Even voice over LTE is very difficult and problematic.”

New mobile generations have appeared about every 10 years since the first wireless phones came on the scene in 1981. Commercial 2G transmission originated in 1991 by Radiolinja, a Finnish GSM operator. NTT DoCoMo launched the first commercial 3G system in Japan in 2001.

“On average, the process of developing the next generation of wireless takes seven years, from conception to when all the bugs are worked out,” MacLeod said. “Then the technology operates for five years before the transition begins to the next generation.” Count on the carriers to hold onto their 4G LTE investment as long as possible, he added.

Thanks to 4G Americas for providing historical background on the standards development.