Ericsson small cells to boost Verizon Wireless’ 4G LTE network

Telecom Lead America: Ericsson will deploy small cells at Verizon Wireless’ 4G LTE network this year.

Small cell will enhance the capacity in Verizon’s 4G LTE network, enabling it to continue providing high quality and reliable mobile broadband service to its customers.

“Small cells will play a role in the Verizon Wireless strategy to add capacity in high-traffic locations and provide the best customer experience possible on the nation’s largest 4G LTE network,” said Mike Haberman, vice president – Network Support, Verizon Wireless.

Infonetics forecasts the global small cell market to grow rapidly, with about 3 million small cells shipping and the market worth about $2.1 billion in 2016.

For the next 3 years, most operators are planning small cells only in the urban core. Infonetics expects public space femtocells to make up more than 50 percent of all small cells shipped in 2012.

In 2013, Infonetics expects 3G small cells to make up 63 percent of global small cell shipments, with 4G small cells kicking off and ramping up rapidly to make up 37 percent. 4G small cells will overtake 3G small cells by 2015.

Infonetics says early femtocell adopters such as AT&T, Softbank and Vodafone and macro network density dictate which regions represent the largest small cell opportunities, with Asia Pacific expected to lead with 44 percent of all units shipped in 2012, followed by EMEA with 32 percent.

For Ericsson, small cell is a key part of Ericsson’s heterogeneous network strategy. It provides full-service transparency in the network, ensuring that VoLTE, eMBMS and similar functionality work seamlessly in the network.

Ericsson will be providing its micro RRUS (Remote Radio Unit) small cells for Verizon’s 4G LTE network. The micro RRUS is easily integrated into the overall network since it works with any baseband unit part of the RBS 6000 product line.

Later this year, Ericsson will also provide micro RBS 6501 (Radio Base Station) for the Verizon network. Another industry first, the Ericsson micro RBS 6501 is a multi-standard base station supporting 3GPP 37.104 and provides local-area and medium-range coverage in a heterogeneous network environment. The micro RBS delivers high-capacity coverage in a small form factor.

Ericsson faces tough competition in the small cell market. Strategy Analytics says Cisco’s recently announced acquisition of small cell provider Ubiquisys positions the IP vendor to compete head-to-head with Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, Huawei, NSN and other mobile infrastructure vendors.

Cisco has been steadily building and acquiring elements of mobile infrastructure for over a decade, and the Ubiquisys solutions along with acquisition of Intucell for Self Optimizing Network (SON) software and Radio Access Network (RAN) multi-vendor HetNet management, nearly completes the portfolio.

Baburajan K
[email protected]