Light Reading
$250 'network extender' offers no-service-charge coverage boost, but no 3G support yet

Verizon Intros Femtocell

Dan Jones
LR Mobile News Analysis
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor
1/26/2009
50%
50%

Verizon Wireless today launches its first femtocell -- a $250 box that will improve voice and data connections for users living in difficult coverage areas, but won't support 3G EV-DO networks for faster downloads in the home.

The Verizon Wireless Network Extender, which the company is calling a "mini-cell site", is made by Samsung Corp. for the operator. The CDMA radio boasts a coverage range of 5,000 feet and allows voice and data calls to be routed back through the user's wired home network.

The largest CDMA operator in the U.S. is charging $249.99 plus tax for the box but won't be tapping users for a service fee after the initial purchase.

Verizon describes the Network Extender as "ideal for customers who want to boost their wireless signal when making voice calls, sending text/picture/video messages, accessing Mobile Web or accessing Smartphone/BlackBerry data in situations that could include houses with structural barriers, in basement rooms, or in some remote, mountainous or hilly areas." The femto will also boost coverage for those living on the edge of Verizon's network deploymemts.

The initial user questions around the mini base station are likely to center around the cost of the box and the lack of 3G support. The only current rival on the U.S. market, the Airave -- also made by Samsung -- doesn't offer 3G support either, but only costs $99. Sprint, however, does charge a monthly fee for the femto subscription.

The lack of EV-DO 3G support will likely raise some eyebrows, given the initial cost of the unit. A Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) veep, talking to Unstrung at the CES show recently, suggested that the main reason carriers wanted femtocells in the U.S. was to relieve some download pressure brought on by the latest wave of 3G smartphones. Cisco is reportedly working with AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) on its femtocell deployment project. (See AT&T Targets Q2 Femto Launch and CES: AT&T's Femtos in the Fall?)

The extender concept, however, is actually right in line with what Verizon Wireless's CTO, Tony Melone, told us he wanted out of femtocells last year: better indoor penetration for voice. (See the video below.)



Verizon has been vocal about its interest in femtocells for months now. (See Verizon Eyes Femtos and Verizon Eyes Femtos for 2009.) In fact, the Network Extender follows hard on the footsteps of the box that many expected to be the big V's first femto but which turned out to be a fancy home hub. (See Verizon's Home Hub-Bub (But No Femto).)

Verizon Wireless’s Network Extender is available online and at "select Verizon Wireless Communications Stores."

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

(24)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Page 1 / 3   >   >>
joset01
50%
50%
joset01,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:13:21 PM
re: Verizon Intros Femtocell
So, if you pay $250 and no further fees for a femto is that a good deal?

DJ
paolo.franzoi
50%
50%
paolo.franzoi,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:13:19 PM
re: Verizon Intros Femtocell

I am really underwhelmed by this. If they built a router to replace my existing home router with all its features and gave me a femto on top of it for under $100 - MAYBE I might consider it.

But for this? Just give me a phone that includes a VoIP application over WiFi. I already OWN a WiFi router. Since they require a broadband setup, why not assume I have WiFi. My favorite bit is disclaimers around Wireless Broadband as WAN side. If I had a good Wireless Broadband connection, I probably don't need a femtocell.

If this is what is coming for femtocells, it will become the Ryan Leaf of the wireless business.

seven
freetoair
50%
50%
freetoair,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:13:18 PM
re: Verizon Intros Femtocell
bad deal.
what am i getting?

I have a desktop PC, laptop and a smartphone.
Why do i need/want this?

Because I have a coverage/capacity/bandwidth problem?
gocowboys
50%
50%
gocowboys,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:13:17 PM
re: Verizon Intros Femtocell
I happen to be in a coverage dead zone (for Verizon wireless). Guess that the TV ads are not all that true...what a surprise! Anyhow, I am tired of going out on the porch and lifting one arm South, holding my leg and then dialing with my nose. For $250 and no fees, it is in the price range of a new phone. For that, I will happily give it a shot.

I looked at the coverage and 5,000 square feet represents about 70' by 70'. I am not worried about the neighbors using the femto...they are much further away than that. In addition, my upload speed (measured) is running approximately 3 Mbps. So, 40 kbps is not going to mess anything up.

I will let you know how I make out. Can you hear me now?

freetoair
50%
50%
freetoair,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:13:17 PM
re: Verizon Intros Femtocell
no one else gets it either...

...but vendors and the media/analysts hype it...so carriers try it...why not...

again this dog is on the same path as FMC (which was a media/vendor/analyst favorite not so long ago)...all hail FMC -- all hail Femto...yeah yeah yeah
macster
50%
50%
macster,
User Rank: Light Bulb
12/5/2012 | 4:13:17 PM
re: Verizon Intros Femtocell
I don't get it. You pay the phone company to provide the service including coverage and backhaul. Now they want you to pay them for a femtocell and you get to pay for the coverage and backhaul they are meant to be providing.

So if this thing has a 5000 foot (1.5km!) range no doubt you will be providing backhaul and coverage for quite a few other people. Even if that figure is out by an order of magnitude it's still a very big area. Perhaps one reason why there is no EVDO support.

Sounds like a great deal. For the phone company.

For doing this they should be paying you.

I predict market failure.


-------------------------------------------------

Usage of home Node B's (femtos) depend on "user groups" (or closed user groups). Femtos and UEs will have such information. As such, unlike unsecured WiFi, you don't unwillingly share your connection.
lrmobile_millomar
50%
50%
lrmobile_millomar,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:13:17 PM
re: Verizon Intros Femtocell
I don't get it. You pay the phone company to provide the service including coverage and backhaul. Now they want you to pay them for a femtocell and you get to pay for the coverage and backhaul they are meant to be providing.

So if this thing has a 5000 foot (1.5km!) range no doubt you will be providing backhaul and coverage for quite a few other people. Even if that figure is out by an order of magnitude it's still a very big area. Perhaps one reason why there is no EVDO support.

Sounds like a great deal. For the phone company.

For doing this they should be paying you.

I predict market failure.
macster
50%
50%
macster,
User Rank: Light Bulb
12/5/2012 | 4:13:16 PM
re: Verizon Intros Femtocell
Cowboy,

That's true. For the likes of AT&T, having a femto solution is useful, given the dreadful indoor coverage in NA (unlike Europe where one can estimate the indoor traffic to be about 80%).

You ought to have no worries about others "tapping" into your connection - think secured WiFi (something like that).

Femtos make use of DSL specs, e.g. TR69, etc. Nothing wrong with that, but my concerns are around this. Especially in the (majority?) of cases where the mobile operator does not have their own DSL network.

Oh, and handover issue are not sorted yet in standards, from macro to home node b - so your call will drop when you get out of the car into your home - lol.



Mac

P.S. I hear you loud and clear :)
paolo.franzoi
50%
50%
paolo.franzoi,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:13:12 PM
re: Verizon Intros Femtocell

Just FYI, I had a UMA phone from T-mobile and could access my secure wifi at home. I switched to a G-1 because a) my t-mobile signal got beter and b) I have a cable modem and can tell you first hand about poor voip quality over cable (over DSL no problemo).

seven
joset01
50%
50%
joset01,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:13:12 PM
re: Verizon Intros Femtocell
Let us know how it goes. Thanks

DJ
Page 1 / 3   >   >>
Flash Poll
From The Founder
It's clear to me that the communications industry is divided into two types of people, and only one is living in the real world.
LRTV Custom TV
Using Service Quality to Drive WiFi Monetization

10|22|14   |   6:51   |   (0) comments


Live from the SCTE conference: Heavy Reading's Alan Breznick explores the forces shaping the WiFi opportunity in an interview with CableLabs' Justin Colwell and Amdocs' Ken Roulier.
LRTV Custom TV
Distributed Access Architectures – 2

10|21|14   |   8:51:00 AM   |   (0) comments


ARRIS CTO Network Solutions Tom Cloonan discusses why many if not most MSOs will continue with integrated CCAP, while addressing why some are also looking at two futuristic, distributed access architectures: Remote PHY and Remote CCAP.
LRTV Custom TV
Distributed Access Architectures – 1

10|21|14   |   9:01   |   (0) comments


SCTE Sr. Director of Engineering Dean Stoneback discusses the pros and cons of distributed access architecture (DAA) and its various forms, which range from basic Remote PHY to full CMTS functionality in the node.
LRTV Custom TV
The WiFi Road to Riches – 2

10|21|14   |   3:58   |   (0) comments


ARRIS Senior Solution Architect Eli Baruch talks about how MSOs can enable public and community WiFi through 1) outdoor access points, 2) businesses seeking to offer WiFi to customers, and 3) residential WiFi gateway extensions.
LRTV Custom TV
The WiFi Road to Riches – 1

10|21|14   |   10:15   |   (0) comments


SCTE Director of Advanced Technologies Steve Harris discusses WiFi deployments, drivers, challenges and advances, including 802.11ac, carrier-grade WiFi, community WiFi, Hotspot 2.0, Passpoint, WiFi-First and voice-over-WiFi.
LRTV Custom TV
Advantech Accelerates 100G Traffic Handling

10|17|14   |   7:56   |   (0) comments


Paul Stevens from Advantech explains why handling 100GbE needs a whole new platform design approach and how Advantech is addressing the needs of equipment providers and carriers to give them the flexibility and performance they will need for SDN and NFV deployment.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Holland's Imtech Traffic & Infra Discusses Huawei's ICT Solution and Services

10|16|14   |   4:49   |   (0) comments


Dimitry Theebe is from the business unit at Imtech Traffic & Infra which delivers communications solutions for transportations. His partnershp with Huawei began about a years ago. In this video, Theebe speaks more about this partnership and what he hopes to accomplish with Huawei.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Comprehensive Storage Solutions Vital for SVR

10|16|14   |   6:16   |   (0) comments


SVR Information Technology provides cloud services for academic and special sectors. With Huawei's support, SVR and Yildiz Technical University has established Turkey's largest and most advanced High Performance Computing system. CSO Ismail Cem Aslan talks about what he hopes Huawei's OceanStor storage system will bring for him.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Mexico's Servitron's Impression of Huawei at CCW 2014

10|16|14   |   6:35   |   (0) comments


Servitron is a network operator in Mexico that has been in the trunking industry for the past 20 years. Its COO, Ing. Ragnar Trillo O., explains at Critical Communications World 2014 that his company has been interested in the long-term evolution of LTE technology and its adoption for TETRA.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Building a Better Dubai

10|16|14   |   2:06   |   (0) comments


Abdulla Ahmed Al Falasi is the director of commercial affairs, a telecommunications coordinator for the government of Dubai. Their areas of service span across multiple industries, including police, safety, shopping malls and more. In this video, Abdulla talks about his department's work with Huawei.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Lights Up Malaysia Partner Maju Nusa

10|16|14   |   1:59   |   (0) comments


Malaysia's Maju Nusa is an enterprise partner to Huawei in networking, route switches and telco equipment. At this year's Critical Communications World in Singapore, CTO Pushpender Singh talks about what Huawei's eLTE solutions mean to his company and for Malaysia.
LRTV Custom TV
Evolving From HFC to FTTH Networks

10|15|14   |   2:19   |   (0) comments


Cisco's Todd McCrum delves into the future of cable's HFC plant, examining how DOCSIS 3.1 and advanced video compression will extend its life and how the IP video transition will usher in GPON and EPON over FTTH.
Upcoming Live Events
October 29, 2014, New York City
November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
December 2, 2014, New York City
December 3, 2014, New York City
December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
February 10, 2015, Atlanta, GA
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
WhoIsHostingThis.com presents six of the world's most extreme WiFi hotspots, enabling the most epic selfies you can imagine.
Hot Topics
Analysts Warn of Major NFV Gaps
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/22/2014
Is Health the Killer App for the IoT?
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Gigabit Cities/IoT, 10/22/2014
Drones Hover Over the IoT Sector
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Gigabit Cities/IoT, 10/23/2014
1959 Newsreel: Make Phone Calls – From Cars!
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 10/24/2014
Meet the Phantom Network for NFV
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 10/23/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed