Light Reading
Head of Cisco's small cell group says it's trialing multimode small cells with more than one service provider

Cisco: Multimode Small Cells Coming Early 2014

Sarah Reedy
LR Mobile News Analysis
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor
7/22/2013
50%
50%

Cisco Systems Inc. may be a relatively new player in the small cell space, but it's already plotting commercial multimode small cell launches for early next year.

The networking giant plans to trial multimode small cells -- tiny base stations that pack in 3G, 4G and Wi-Fi -- with more than one service provider at the end of this year, and they will go live in early 2014, Partho Mishra, VP and GM of Cisco's small cell technology group, confirmed to Light Reading in a telepresence briefing at Cisco's Rosemont, Ill., office.

Cisco's big push into small cells didn't come until this year when it acquired self-optimizing network (SON) provider Intucell in January and LTE small cell vendor Ubiquisys in April. Mishra said that with these two companies under its belt, multimode small cells will be relatively easy to build. (See Cisco to Buy AT&T's Favorite SON Startup and Cisco Buying Ubiquisys for $310M.) "The 3G and Wi-Fi pieces are mature," Mishra said. "The work we are doing is on LTE on the access side and core network infrastructure side. It's all available today with our packet core, so we can reuse that."

As the company moves to multimode, it's still focusing on areas where network congestion is most acute, such as indoor venues. Mishra said that Cisco will use Intucell's SON technology to tackle the non-trivial issue of dynamically selecting which network to use and avoiding interference when a mobile device latches on to a multimode small cell. (See Multimode Small Cells Get Stalled in Labs.)



The company hasn't said which service providers it is working with, but AT&T Inc. is a good bet as it's supplied AT&T with 3G femtocells since 2009. Plus, AT&T has said it will have multimode small cells on the market in 2014. Verizon Wireless has also been rumored to be a potential customer for Cisco. (See 3G, 4G & Wi-Fi: AT&T Plans Small Cell Threesome and Cisco: A Verizon 4G Small Cell Provider?)

Cisco plans to continue to grow its small cell strategy organically, but it's not opposed to making more acquisitions in the name of progress. Mishra said the company does a good job of integrating acquired technology into existing product lines, and it plans to continue to do this with small cells to address gaps in key "transport and service" areas. "In the areas of small cells, we've done five acquisitions in the past year and spent close to $2 billion," he said. "We're not shy about making an investment to make the market happen."

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(6)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Cableco44
50%
50%
Cableco44,
User Rank: Light Bulb
7/23/2013 | 11:08:53 PM
re: Cisco: Multimode Small Cells Coming Early 2014
I wonder about this today when AT&T relies heavily on WayPort for it's Wi-Fi product of HotSpots. Last I configured WayPort was 1998-2000. I do not really recall the brand of Wi-Fi modem it was using and wonder if the Intucell covers the EMS/NMS functions for WayPort.
briley85
50%
50%
briley85,
User Rank: Light Beer
7/23/2013 | 2:20:07 PM
re: Cisco: Multimode Small Cells Coming Early 2014
Agreed. The Ubi acquisition advanced both their LTE and multi-standard access point position significantly forward.
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
7/23/2013 | 1:49:17 PM
re: Cisco: Multimode Small Cells Coming Early 2014
Thanks for the clarification. That was Cisco's response to "do you have an LTE small cell?" but it's skirting around it. The Ubiquisys acquisition should position it well to build an LTE small cell though.
briley85
50%
50%
briley85,
User Rank: Light Beer
7/23/2013 | 1:00:13 PM
re: Cisco: Multimode Small Cells Coming Early 2014
Sarah, the ASR5k is the hardware platform that hosts the Small Cell Gateway software. To my knowledge, Cisco has not released an LTE small cell... yet. Also, the ASR5k is the same hardware platform that AT&T has deployed for it's EPC.
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
7/22/2013 | 7:55:18 PM
re: Cisco: Multimode Small Cells Coming Early 2014
Cisco does offer an LTE compatible small cell, the Cisco ASR 5000 Series Small Cell Gateway. It is based on the Cisco ASR 5000 hardware and it is in Korea Telecom today. More details here: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/sol...
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
7/22/2013 | 7:34:29 PM
re: Cisco: Multimode Small Cells Coming Early 2014
AT&T certainly makes sense for Cisco's first deployment given their partnership on AT&T's 3G microcell and Intucell's inroads with the carrier. Verizon says it's not thinking about multimode small cells yet at all.
Flash Poll
From The Founder
Is your network built on 'The Old IP,' or are you part of 'The New IP' revolution?
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Innovating Access Technology With G.fast

10|1|14   |   3.42   |   (0) comments


Exploring the potential of G.fast technology from the point of view of the Broadband Forum, Huawei – and an end-user.
LRTV Documentaries
A Cultural Shift for an OTT World

9|26|14   |   01:41   |   (3) comments


Telcos need to embrace a new approach to partnerships if they are to generate extra revenues quickly and give customers what they want.
LRTV Documentaries
New Skills Needed as Telecom, IT Collide

9|26|14   |   4:07   |   (1) comment


As telecom and IT collide, new technologies are emerging, new skills are needed and new opportunities for women are arising.
UBB Forum News
Do IP Networks Need An Overhaul?

9|25|14   |   02:01   |   (0) comments


As traffic levels ramp, do IP networks need new technologies and topologies?
LRTV Documentaries
Sprint Wields Its Influence in the Valley

9|25|14   |   3:09   |   (11) comments


Anne-Louise Kardas, Sprint's connection to startups in the Valley, explains how telcos can be innovative and find new opportunities with partners.
LRTV Documentaries
SDN, NFV & The Future of XO's Network

9|25|14   |   3:47   |   (1) comment


XO Communications COO Don MacNeil explains how cloud, SDN and NFV are altering its network requirements as well as changing data centers of the future.
UBB Forum News
The OTT Conundrum

9|24|14   |   01:39   |   (0) comments


What is holding back prosperous partnerships between telcos and the OTT players?
LRTV Documentaries
Putting Broadband to Work

9|24|14   |   01:26   |   (0) comments


High-speed broadband network rollout is key to telco strategies, but it's what happens after the network is built that counts.
Light Reedy
Light Reading's Women in Telecom Recap

9|24|14   |   0:55   |   (4) comments


Our first Women in Telecom breakfast was a huge success, and we hope you'll join us in London for the next event on November 6.
UBB Forum News
Monetizing Ultra-Broadband

9|24|14   |   01:43   |   (2) comments


Ultra-broadband networks need to be built, with fiber-to-the-premises the ultimate goal, but they need to be monetized, too.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Sales Director of INIT on Plug & Play Switch Devices

9|19|14   |   3:21   |   (0) comments


INIT Italy uses both the Huawei S5700 and S7700 series switches for the campus LAN environment. Sales Director Andrea Curti says their company chose these Huawei devices over others because of their performance, flexible scalability and plug-and-play features.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Saudi Arabia Upgrades Vocational Training System

9|19|14   |   3:31   |   (0) comments


The Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC) has 100,000 students, 150 government-owned institutions and oversees 1000 private institutes. The CIO of TVTC explains that Huawei devices have allowed them to manage multiple datacenters using just one software program, scientifically tracking the progress of students and teachers, saving them millions.
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
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
Half of the world's population will be connected to the Internet by 2017, but not just by smartphones and desktops.
Hot Topics
Facebook Pokes Around LTE Direct
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/25/2014
Is Redbox Instant Shutting Down?
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 9/30/2014
Sprint Wields Its Influence in the Valley
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/25/2014
US Ignite Cultivates Gigabit Apps
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Utility Communications/IoT, 9/25/2014
Comcast Turns Off Streampix
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 9/26/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed