Light Reading

Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE

Sarah Thomas
7/25/2012
50%
50%

Lemko Corp. , a small company based outside of Chicago, came on the scene in 2002 with the simple plan of being the most all-American, least expensive mobile company.

Of course, that upset just about everyone. In 10 years, CEO Nicholas Labun says he's been kicked out of his fair share of meetings for pitching an approach that runs counter to how most operators run their networks with the help of the big (non-U.S. based, Labun points out) equipment vendors like Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC), Nokia Networks , Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) and Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd.

Here's Lemko's pitch, summed up by its acronym DiMoWiNe, or Distributed Mobile Wireless Network: virtualize the network's Evolved Packet Core (EPC) and IMS functionality and push it to the edge. Essentially, remove the backhaul and do all the authentication, switching, routing and rating at the eNodeB, which is connected to the cloud as a Layer 7 app. (See Lemko to Show Off 'Backhaul-less' 4G at CTIA.) By the way, we had a good laugh at the acronym, too.

Jokes aside, Lemko is quite serious about DiMoWiNe's potential. "DiMoWiNe turns cellular into an app that jumps on the Internet right away," says Lemko COO Bohdan Pyskir.

The company has more than 500 commercial and military deployments, including some primarily rural wireless operators in areas like fishing towns in Alaska where there were previously no options for coverage -- and, Psikyer said, no motivation to provide coverage. (See Lemko deploys LTE network in Alaska, meets FCC deadline.)

But, now, the company is putting the hard press on the Tier 1 space. Labun says it has five-month trial underway with a Tier 1 Long Term Evolution (LTE) operator in Canada.

Light Reading Mobile paid a visit to Lemko's Schaumburg, Ill., headquarters for a deeper dive into DiMoWiNe. Click on the image below to launch a short slideshow of the trip.



Network savior or missed opportunity?
While the acronym is new, the concept of pushing intelligence to the edge is not. The big equipment vendors have talked about it too, but so far major operators haven't implemented it. Heavy Reading analyst Gabriel Brown points out that some WiMax firms had the same idea, as did some specialist cellular players equipping cruise ships with coverage, for example. He expects the market will remain in specialized networks and applications for the foreseeable future.

But Lemko believes the technology can be valuable for the big guys in that it not only reduces operating expenses fivefold -- from $5 per gigabyte to $1 per gigabyte -- but also reduces wireless operators' need for more spectrum and their reliance on Wi-Fi offload.

"Wi-Fi is not natural to a carrier," Labun says. "There's no reason not to have a smarter base station on every corner."

Technology Business Research Inc. (TBR) analyst Ken Hyers believes the concept has merit. Backhaul is a big expense for operators, and one that's only growing as LTE networks consume more data. The fact that Lemko's architecture reduces spectrum use by processing data traffic at each node rather than through the central node and back to the central core would bring cost savings.

The issue, however, is that most wireless operators have already made major upgrades to their core to implement LTE. Convincing them to make another near-term investment in moving those functions to the edge will be a big hurdle for a small company like Lemko, the analyst says.

"Expenses are going to be a big factor in a decision like this, and operators right now are being cautious about their investments at the moment," Hyers wrote in an email to LR Mobile.

Even so, Lemko's hope is that the opex savings offset the initial investment. It is in talks with a number of Tier 1 operators, pitching the merits of its solution for LTE out the gate. Today the company also announced Wednesday that it has achieved interoperability for roaming between 700MHz LTE lower band class 12 and band class 17.

And, for its part, Lemko has its concerns about working with the big guys too. CEO Labun says the last thing he wants is to "go into their labs and die." Large carriers stick to large vendors, he admits, but he also believes rising data costs will force the change.

"It's a simple concept, but it's hard to prove it [at scale] as a small company ... but something has to change," Labun says. "We think it's the architecture."

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

(21)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
shygye75
50%
50%
shygye75,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:26:41 PM
re: Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE


Interesting that the "all-American" company has no problem running trials in Canada. Must be a slow news day.

joanengebretson
50%
50%
joanengebretson,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:26:30 PM
re: Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE


Lemko's approach could make sense for small carriers that can't afford the investment in the network core. The company will be competing with companies that enable carriers to outsource the entire core using a cloud approach. But Lemko's approach may be more economical for carriers that would entail high backhaul costs in connecting to the cloud.

paolo.franzoi
50%
50%
paolo.franzoi,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:26:30 PM
re: Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE


 


And I guess I am confused by "only American"....what about Tellabs (8600) and Motorola?


seven


 

shygye75
50%
50%
shygye75,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:26:30 PM
re: Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE


Which means exactly what in a global industry?

jggveth
50%
50%
jggveth,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:26:28 PM
re: Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE


Coca Cola is global.  Meth is American. 

Soupafly
50%
50%
Soupafly,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:26:26 PM
re: Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE


Am not sure if its your article tone, the quotes or just his persona but from the piece I can see why Lemko may have been thrown out of meetings. He doesnt come across as a very agreeable or personable character.


Strikes me that a MVNO who wanted to be really disruptive could use this tech. Why not cherry pick urban customers, deploy this tech and challenge for customers where density is highest & commoditised connectivity the cheapest? Geezus! how obvious is that...


From a sales & account strategy why would you target a carrier of size, who is suckling on the nipple of Ericsson, Alu, Huawei, etc, etc.... Do you really think you can win against them in a straight fight??


 

RBR
50%
50%
RBR,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:26:25 PM
re: Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE

Lemko’s targeting the cumbersome legacy backhaul architecture is savvy and potentially very disrupting; provided they also target the right customer (hat tip soupafly).  Delivering 100 Mbps of Internet access to a base station is far easier and cheaper then 100 M Carrier Ethernet back to designate NNIs.  Taken to its fullest, this approach frees any ISP to service the terrestrial offload with minimal operational maintenance by the carrier.  Combine this with a Micro, Mini and Femto approach, and it’s a new ball game…

MobileBroadband33
50%
50%
MobileBroadband33,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:26:25 PM
re: Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE


edwilley3,


Yes, it's the same company, where Motorola Solutions jointly announce settlement of all pending litigation. All claims in the then pending lawsuits have been dismissed with prejudice.


Yes, you better believe they are selling to the Military, and rightfully so. Lemko has a ground breaking solution that's farther ahead in the game than any other solution available at this time. This industry keeps trying to evolve to the next solution. We need more than that. Lemko is on the right path.


 

Pete Baldwin
50%
50%
Pete Baldwin,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:26:24 PM
re: Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE


I like the MVNO idea, Soup. That does seem appealing.


Separately: I've decided I'm going to pronounce "DiMoWiNe" as "dino-wino."


If only we worked in a physical newsroom. I'd be saying "dino-wino" all the time until the rest of the LR editors got sick of me.

justopinion
50%
50%
justopinion,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:26:23 PM
re: Lemko Pitches Backhaul-Free LTE


if you can't believe then you should click on:


http://www.bgr.com/2011/11/17/...

Page 1 / 2   >   >>
Flash Poll
From The Founder
Anshul Sadana answers questions from Steve Saunders, Light Reading's founder and CEO, about Arista's CloudVision, a global cloud network controller for workload orchestration and workflow automation delivering a turnkey solution for cloud networking.
Live Streaming Video
CLOUD / MANAGED SERVICES: Prepping Ethernet for the Cloud
Moderator: Ray LeMaistre Panelists: Jeremy Bye, Leonard Sheahan
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei ONS Product Demo

8|3|15   |   6:01   |   (0) comments


Huawei shows at Open Networking Summit 2015 in Santa Clara how its SDN and NFV solutions embrace openness.
LRTV Custom TV
End-User or Enterprise Benefits to the New IP

7|30|15   |   04:27   |   (1) comment


Andrew Coward discusses what the New IP means to end users or enterprise customers. He explains compelling reasons, including how every customer can get their own network, from the transformation to the New IP.
LRTV Custom TV
Network Visibility & the New IP

7|30|15   |   02:23   |   (0) comments


Mukund Srigopal provides an explanation of what network visibility is and how it is essential as service providers transition to the New IP. In addition, the importance of the network packet broker is discussed.
Between the CEOs
Video Exclusive With Basil Alwan, Alcatel-Lucent

7|24|15   |   26:44   |   (5) comments


Basil Alwan, President of IP Routing & Transport at Alcatel-Lucent, discusses virtualization, cultural challenges, the capex crunch and more with Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders.
LRTV Custom TV
VDF: Enable the Financial With Mobile Money

7|20|15   |   06:53   |   (0) comments


Ian Ravenscroft discusses how operators can expand to occupy the entire digital services value chain through service innovation.
LRTV Custom TV
Telefónica on OSS Transformation

7|20|15   |   06:01   |   (0) comments


Jose Gonzales discusses the details of Telefónica's operation transformation program.
LRTV Custom TV
Judi Achmadi on Huawei's Cloud Storage Solution

7|20|15   |   03:33   |   (0) comments


Judi discusses the key business goals of TelekomSigma's public cloud service and how Huawei's solution helps them address challenges.
LRTV Custom TV
KPN Enlightening Digital Business & IT Transformation

7|20|15   |   06:19   |   (0) comments


Rob de Beer discusses the changes that operators need to make with service innovation now coming from the Internet world.
LRTV Custom TV
Stratus Telco-Grade Cloud Solutions & NFV

7|20|15   |   07:34   |   (0) comments


Ali Kafel from Stratus Technologies addresses high-availability concerns within the telco industry with a solution that enables telcos to provide high-availability and stateful fault-tolerance using a software-based approach.
LRTV Documentaries
The Six Million Dollar Business Man

7|20|15   |   01:52   |   (0) comments


Steve Saunders, publisher. A man barely alive after an acquisition malfunction imploded the company he founded. Gentlemen, we can rebuild Light Reading. Better, faster, stronger.
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Anukool Lakhina, Guavus

7|20|15   |   38:51   |   (1) comment


Guavus CEO Anukool Lakhina talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the role of operational analytics in the communications services and networking sectors, particularly in relation to IoT.
LRTV Custom TV
IBM's Flash Storage With Intel QuickAssist

7|20|15   |   03:18   |   (0) comments


Intel's Bev Crair and IBM's Eric Herzog discuss how IBM's V9000 Flash Storage System has helped customers around the world. Featuring real-time compression powered by Intel QuickAssist Technology, the V9000 is a next-gen flash storage solution.
Upcoming Live Events
September 16-17, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
November 5, 2015, Hilton Santa Clara, Santa Clara, CA
November 17, 2015, Santa Clara, California
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Network operators start seeing savings from NFV in the first year, according to a study by Affirmed Networks and ACG.
Hot Topics
Cable Feuds With Senate Dems Over STBs
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, 7/31/2015
Verizon Small Cells Ready to Rock in Chicago
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 7/31/2015
RJio to Launch Its Own 4G Devices Brand
Gagandeep Kaur, Contributing Editor, 7/27/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
September 22, 2015
Media Begins With “Me”
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Basil Alwan, President of IP Routing & Transport at Alcatel-Lucent, discusses virtualization, cultural challenges, the capex crunch and more with Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders.
Guavus CEO Anukool Lakhina talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the role of operational analytics in the communications services and networking sectors, particularly in relation to IoT.
Cats with Phones
Comes With Free Phone Stand Click Here
Who says cats don't have any skills?