Light Reading

AT&T: Multimode Small Cells by Early 2015

Dan Jones
1/13/2014
50%
50%
Repost This

AT&T is now expecting to start rolling out small cells that can support 3G, 4G, and WiFi late this year or early in 2015.

AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T)'s Kris Rinne, senior vice president of network technology at AT&T Labs, gave Light Reading a quick rundown on where the operator is now with small cells at its annual developers' conference in Las Vegas last week. (See AT&T Hears Call of VoLTE in 2014.)

"Today, most of our small cells are UMTS or HSPA+," she told us. (See AT&T Sings Song of Small Cells With HARP.)

Rinne says that AT&T is testing LTE-only small cells for pure outdoor coverage. AT&T is likely to deploy single-mode LTE small cells where there is a business case to do so, she noted.

The operator, however, has been testing multimode small cells that support 3G, LTE, and WiFi in its labs since at least April 2013. Multimode small cells are some of the most tricky devices for vendors to deliver but will -- eventually -- offer carriers the most connectivity options. (See AT&T Has LTE Small Cells 'in the Lab'.)

AT&T hasn't been vocal about a multimode timeline, but Rinne said she now expects to see these units "late this year" or "early next."

Heavy Reading is currently predicting that half a million public access small cells will be in live service, requiring new backhaul, by the end of 2015. (See How Heavy Reading Called Small Cells Right.)

AT&T has so far said that it expects to deploy more than 40,000 small cells by the end of 2015. The operator hasn't broken out how many of those tiny radios might need new backhaul.

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

(7)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Dan@LightReadingMobile
50%
50%
Dan@LightReadingMobile,
User Rank: Blogger
1/13/2014 | 6:32:52 PM
Re: No Backhaul Required?
You would think so, but who knows in the whacky world of small cells?
MordyK
50%
50%
MordyK,
User Rank: Light Sabre
1/13/2014 | 6:24:26 PM
Re: No Backhaul Required?
Interesting. I wonder if that's gonna undergo a rapid change...
Dan@LightReadingMobile
50%
50%
Dan@LightReadingMobile,
User Rank: Blogger
1/13/2014 | 6:18:00 PM
Re: No Backhaul Required?
Mostly 3G so far according to Rinne.
MordyK
50%
50%
MordyK,
User Rank: Light Sabre
1/13/2014 | 5:41:21 PM
Re: No Backhaul Required?
Good points but I would hazard to guess that its largely an 4G affair at this point, because as more phones become LTE capable the 3G network actually improves and requires less augmentations, wheras LTE becomes ever more in need of help.
Dan@LightReadingMobile
50%
50%
Dan@LightReadingMobile,
User Rank: Blogger
1/13/2014 | 5:32:31 PM
Re: No Backhaul Required?
Maybe so, also note that AT&T has never split out how many of its planned small cells will be 3G-only, 4G-only or Multimode. That could also have a bearing on backhaul planning because you'll need more horsepower for LTE or multis.
MordyK
50%
50%
MordyK,
User Rank: Light Sabre
1/13/2014 | 5:26:27 PM
Re: No Backhaul Required?
It really depends on the deployment focus. The more complex, the greater the backhaul challenge.

Personally I think the big backhaul payoff for all the new vendors is a little farther out as the deployments become more "exotic".
Dan@LightReadingMobile
50%
50%
Dan@LightReadingMobile,
User Rank: Blogger
1/13/2014 | 2:38:06 PM
No Backhaul Required?
FYI, I went back through AT&T's commentary on small cells so far. As far as I can they have never split out how many of these 40,000+ small cells will require new backhaul.
Flash Poll
LRTV Custom TV
Optimizing SDN & NFV Architectures Through Application Awareness

4|23|14   |   6:24   |   (0) comments


Jerome Tollet, CTO at Qosmos, explains how network equipment vendors and operators deploying SDN and NFV can take advantage of network intelligence delivered by DPI to strengthen products and services.
LRTV Custom TV
Wind River Demonstrates Carrier-Grade Software for NFV

4|22|14   |   5:00   |   (0) comments


Wind River VP of Product Management, Glenn Seiler, takes a look the industry's first and only complete NFV software platform designed specifically for the unique carrier-grade and high-performance needs of telecom networks.
LRTV Documentaries
Cable Eyes Big Technology Shifts

4|16|14   |   03:02   |   (4) comments


US cable engineers are facing a lot of heavy lifting in the coming years, notes Light Reading Cable/Video Practice Leader Alan Breznick.
LRTV Custom TV
Maximizing Customer Experience & Assuring Service Delivery in an IP World

4|15|14   |   4:57   |   (0) comments


Steven Shalita, VP of Marketing, NetScout Systems, Inc., discusses the challenges cable/MSO operators face in assuring the delivery of new IP-based services. Key points include the value of proactively managing performance, and using rich analytics and operational intelligence to better understand service and usage trends, make smarter business decisions and ...
LRTV Documentaries
Bye-Bye DVD: Consumers Embrace Digital Video

4|10|14   |   04:17   |   (7) comments


Veteran video analyst Colin Dixon, founder and principal analyst of nScreenMedia, says research shows 56% are using digital video already.
LRTV Documentaries
Video: TW Cable Puts Multicast Gateways to the Test

4|8|14   |   04:13   |   (1) comment


Tom Gonder, a chief architect at Time Warner Cable, explains how its trial of multicast gateways is impacting IP-based video plans.
LRTV Custom TV
Managing & Monetizing Big Data in Operator Environments

4|7|14   |     |   (1) comment


At Mobile World Congress, Gigamon's Director of Service Provider Solutions, Andy Huckridge, and Heavy Reading Analyst Sarah Wallace discuss the 'big data' issues facing carriers and operators today.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Data Center Energy – Build Your Data Center in a Modular Way

4|7|14   |   2:13   |   (0) comments


Dr. Fang Liangzhou, VP Network Energy Product Line, shared his thoughts about the challenges for data centers during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Agile Network Solution – An Overview of Huawei's Agile Network Solution

4|7|14   |   2:31   |   (0) comments


Ajay Gupta, Director of Product Marketing, Networking Product Line, gives an overview of the Agile Network Solutions during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei’s eLTE Voice Trunking, Video and Data Applied for Railways

4|7|14   |   1:38   |   (0) comments


Gottfried Winter is the Sales Director at Funkwerk, a German specialist in GSM-r terminals and a long-time partner of Huawei. At CeBIT 2014, Winter talks to Light Reading about this partnership and the integration of enhanced voice trunking, video and data functions.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
LeaseWeb Speaks Highly of Huawei's Datacenter Products

4|7|14   |   1:37   |   (0) comments


Rene Olde Olthof, Operations Director LeaseWeb, talks about the next data center transformation during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Documentaries
Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture

4|3|14   |   07:11   |   (8) comments


Shamim Akhtar, Comcast's architect and senior director of network strategy, explains why the cable company is moving to a more distributed network architecture.
Today's Cartoon
Hot Topics
WhatsApp Threatens Carrier VoLTE
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 4/18/2014
The Hungry, Hungry Cloud
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/22/2014
Who's Ready to Play Broadband?
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 4/21/2014
What's the Magic of Private Equity?
Carolyn Mathas, 4/22/2014
AT&T Turns Up Gig Heat in 21 New Metros
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/21/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed