& cplSiteName &

Sprint Plans Indoor, Outdoor Small Cells in 2014

Sarah Thomas
2/11/2014
50%
50%

Sprint will begin deploying both indoor and outdoor small cells later this year, executives confirmed on the carrier's fourth-quarter earnings call Tuesday.

Steve Elfman, Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S)'s president of Network, Technology, and Operations, told analysts on the call that small cells are an important part of Sprint's network investment strategy and to expect deployments both indoors and outdoors this year.

Sprint was an early leader in 3G femtocells and has been working on deploying LTE picocells with its partners, Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) and Samsung Corp. It has several enterprise deployments underway and is rumored to be working on small-cell-centric LTE networks in some states in the US, but it hasn't outlined its specific deployment plans so far. (See Top 6 Small Cells Movers & Shakers, Sprint Plans to Add 4G LTE Urban Heft in 2014, and Sprint Tees Up LTE Small Cells.)

Small cells will be an important component of Sprint's Network Vision, as it looks to fill in its gaps in coverage. Right now, it's focusing primarily on building out its tri-mode Spark LTE network in the 1900 MHz, 800 MHz, and 2.5 GHz frequencies. It currently has this latest network upgrade up and running in 14 cities, including Philadelphia and Baltimore, both launched today. (See Sprint Adds 70 Fresh LTE Markets and Sprint Feels the Churn Burn Before Spark.)

Its other priorities this year including achieving nationwide coverage with LTE, as well as launching voice-over LTE (VoLTE) and completing its HD voice rollout. Sprint announced last month that it is partnering with BroadSoft Inc. to enable IMS and VoLTE, but it didn't offer a timeline on when VoLTE would go live. Elfman said on the call today that it would have 3G voice over its 800 MHz spectrum, alongside nationwide HD voice, by midyear, which suggests that VoLTE might soon follow. (See Sprint Taps BroadSoft for VoLTE Transition.)

Overall in the fourth quarter, Sprint fared better than analysts were expecting. It lost $1.04 billion, down from $1.32 billion last year, and its revenues grew slightly from $9 billion a year ago to $9.14 billion this quarter.

But, despite the loss of funds, Sprint managed to add 477,000 new wireless customers in the fourth quarter, 58,000 of which were the more valuable postpaid subscribers. As a result, its wireless service revenue grew 5% from last year to $28.6 billion.

When asked about the potential acquisition of T-Mobile US Inc. -- the other topic on all investors' minds -- Sprint CEO Dan Hesse said he wouldn't comment on media speculation, but he didn't dismiss the possibility. (See Tough Road Ahead for Sprint/T-Mobile? and SoftBank's Son Keeps Sprint on Short Leash.)

"I've said consistently for some time that I believe that further consolidation in the industry outside of the big two, AT&T and Verizon, which are big enough, would be healthy, better for the country and for consumers, and I still believe that to be the case," said Hesse.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(11)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
Mitch Wagner
50%
50%
Mitch Wagner,
User Rank: Lightning
2/13/2014 | 6:55:03 PM
Re: Help a newbie out??Definitions
OMG IT'S AS THOUGH YOU READ MY MIND!!!!!111!!!
Sarah Thomas
50%
50%
Sarah Thomas,
User Rank: Blogger
2/12/2014 | 10:51:59 AM
Re: Small cell & VoLTE
That's what I was thinking too, but Bill Ho pointed out on Twitter that SPrint has discussed using them to help with 'speed augmentation' as well. They didn't break out whether they meant indoor or outdoors though.
pzernik
50%
50%
pzernik,
User Rank: Light Sabre
2/11/2014 | 10:07:41 PM
Re: Small cell & VoLTE
Small cells are a pure capacity play, and only in urban areas.  I don't think Sprint will solve any coverage issues with small cells (that will be Band 26).  I do see Band 25 being very useful for inbuilding, small cells and other high capacity situations.
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
2/11/2014 | 9:58:51 PM
Re: Help a newbie out??Definitions
Funny you asked:

http://www.lightreading.com/mobile/small-cells/know-your-small-cell-home-enterprise-or-public-access/a/d-id/707044?

There ya go.
Mitch Wagner
50%
50%
Mitch Wagner,
User Rank: Lightning
2/11/2014 | 6:45:54 PM
Help a newbie out?
What are small cells? I'm guessing they're some kind of box that can be attached to a utility pole or something like that, and used to extend coverage in little corners that aren't covered by big, expensive towers? Or do they replace the need to build new towers?
danielcawrey
50%
50%
danielcawrey,
User Rank: Light Sabre
2/11/2014 | 4:24:39 PM
Re: Small cell & VoLTE
Sprint needs help with coverage in any way it can get it. No matter whether it is indoors or outdoors, they just don't compete with Verizon on coverage.

For companies, this is a make-or-break proposition and why most organizations I have worked with on IT side use Verizon. 

The merger of Sprint with Japan-based Softbank was a sign that there would be increased capitalization in infrastructure investment. Small cells are a big part of this to help fill in a lot of gaps. 
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
2/11/2014 | 2:09:43 PM
Re: Small cell & VoLTE
Indoors should -- in theory -- be easier to deal with vis-a-vis interference with the macro network because they're using less RF power.
McCray
50%
50%
McCray,
User Rank: Light Weight
2/11/2014 | 1:07:34 PM
Re: Small cell & VoLTE
I agree with you Sarah regarding your statement on O-DAS. I think even the Tier 1 operators are still identifying the right solutions (backhaul, antenna types, aesthetics, right-a-way issues). I think the number of application requirements out weight the available solutions.

The suppliers are working hard to develop variety as there is no one size fits all solution to support the various applications (tunnels, campus, outdoor malls, dense urban, rural, coastlines such as long island or pacific coast highway, etc.)

Then you have to factor in that like I-DAS O-DAS is being driven by neutral host providers, carriers, integrators, and even venue owners partnering. There is much experience in the O-DAS space particularly with the Crown Castles, Extenet Systems, American Tower, and revamped Mobilitie groups (Those most familiar with).

It 's going to be interesing how this plays out and one thing for certain is that the larger base station OEMs (ALU, Ericsson, Samsung, Huwaei) versus Small Cell suppliers have initial dominance in the O-DAS space. 

 
Sarah Thomas
50%
50%
Sarah Thomas,
User Rank: Blogger
2/11/2014 | 12:11:51 PM
Re: Small cell & VoLTE
I agree, and it seems most operators are pursuing indoors first as the deployment plans (rights, backhaul, etc) are more clear cut. Sprint certainly needs help with its outdoor network too though.
McCray
50%
50%
McCray,
User Rank: Light Weight
2/11/2014 | 12:07:47 PM
Re: Small cell & VoLTE
Sarah,

I would think indoor would be the priority given over 70%+ of subscriber traffic (voice/data) is generated indoors. I also think milimeter-wave transport will play a key backhaul role.
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
Educational Resources
sponsor supplied content
Educational Resources Archive
From The Founder
The independent evaluation of Nokia's key virtual network functions (VNFs) was a defining moment for the Finnish giant.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Custom TV
Private Company of the Year - Affirmed Networks

6|27|16   |     |   (0) comments


At BCE 2016, Steve Saunders speaks to Hassan Ahmed about Affirmed's success.
LRTV Custom TV
Energy 2020: Growing Services, Not Consumption

6|24|16   |   07:18   |   (0) comments


Management of power requirements needs to be a key consideration as cable operators deploy new services, says Dan Cooper, vice president of critical infrastructure for Charter Communications and chair of the SCTE/ISBE Standards Program's Energy Management Subcommittee. In this video, Cooper discusses the importance of cable operators and technology partners ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei & TDC First to Launch DOCSIS 3.1 Trial in Europe

6|24|16   |     |   (0) comments


To meet the rising demands for high-speed broadband and to tackle fierce competition for 1.5 million household, TDC wanted to upgrade its network to use the latest technology. Using Huawei's DOCSIS 3.1 solution, TDC is now able to offer gigabit speeds to its customers.
LRTV Documentaries
OPNFV Summit: Key Takeaways

6|22|16   |   03:28   |   (0) comments


MANO shortfalls, an increasingly bloated open source ecosystem and the cultural challenges for network operators were among the key takeaways from the OPNFV Summit in Berlin.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Bringing Ultra Broadband to the South Pacific

6|22|16   |   7:55   |   (0) comments


At Singapore's UBBS 2016 summit, Light Reading speaks to Lim Chee Siong, Huawei's CMO in the South Pacific Region.
LRTV Custom TV
Juniper's NFV Platform

6|22|16   |     |   (0) comments


A telco cloud is a key enabler for service providers to deliver virtualized services to their customers. Juniper has a differentiated approach with an open and comprehensive NFV platform to build the cloud of the future for multiple use cases.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Infinera: The Glass Ceiling's Been Broken

6|22|16   |   4:34   |   (0) comments


Shannon Williams, an engineer by trade and now the director of sales for Infinera's major accounts, draws confidence from being a female in a male-dominated industry and hopes other women will too as industry dynamics swing in our favor.
LRTV Custom TV
RAD Demonstrates SD-WAN Functionality at BCE 2016

6|22|16   |     |   (0) comments


In conjunction with Versa Networks, RAD demos a joint solution for SD-WAN implementation. The solution uses RAD's ETX-2i, a vCPE platform integrating a powerful IP and Carrier Ethernet NID/NTU with a field-pluggable x86 NFV module that runs Versa's FlexVNF for SD-WAN functionality. The demo implements SD-WAN over a simulated service provider footprint by deploying ...
LRTV Custom TV
Radware on Virtualizing Network Security

6|21|16   |     |   (0) comments


Radware's Michael O'Malley highlights the benefits for service providers of virtualizing network security.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei 2016 UBBS World Tour: Singapore

6|21|16   |   02:39   |   (0) comments


Highlights from Huawei's UBBS World Tour event in Singapore.
LRTV Custom TV
The FlowBROKER Solution

6|21|16   |     |   (0) comments


During a demo at the Big Communications Event 2016, Accedian director of product line solutions Greg Spear demonstrates how the FlowBROKER distributed packet capture solution (part of Accedian's SkyLIGHT platform) can be used to troubleshoot and resolve QoE issues.

FlowBROKER is the industry's first lossless remote packet capture solution, which uses ...

LRTV Documentaries
BCE 2016: Dell & the New World Order

6|21|16   |   22:48   |   (0) comments


Dell's Jim Ganthier on how the very essence of enterprise is being affected by digital disruption – and how the cloud can help companies find a path forward.
Upcoming Live Events
September 13-14, 2016, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
November 3, 2016, The Montcalm Marble Arch, London
November 30, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 6-8, 2016,
May 16-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
A new survey conducted by Heavy Reading and TM Forum shows that CSPs around the world see the move to digital operations as a necessary part of their overall virtualization strategies.
Hot Topics
'Brexit' Vote Hits BT, Vodafone
Iain Morris, News Editor, 6/24/2016
AT&T Settles on LTE for Cellular IoT
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 6/22/2016
Google Fiber Buys Webpass in Wireless Play
Iain Morris, News Editor, 6/23/2016
Netflix Queues Up Video Downloads
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 6/23/2016
AWS CEO: Enterprise Data Center Is Doomed
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 6/21/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
At the BCE 2016 show in Austin, ECI Telecom CEO Darryl Edwards tells Light Reading founder and CEO about the Elastic Network concept and the company's NFV and cybersecurity developments.
Mark Dzuban, president and CEO of SCTE/ISBE, sits down with Steve Saunders in Light Reading's New York office to discuss the society's Energy 2020 campaign, including its mission to benefit the environment, enable economic benefits and the key challenges facing cable operators wanting to reduce energy consumption.
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Our world has evolved through innovation from the Industrial Revolution of the 1740s to the information age, and it is now entering the Fourth Industrial Revolution, driven by technology. Technology is driving a paradigm shift in the way digital solutions deliver a connected world, changing the way we live, communicate and provide solutions. It can have a powerful impact on how we tackle some of the world’s most pressing problems. In this radio show, Caroline Dowling, President of Communications Infrastructure & Enterprise Computing at Flex, will join Women in Comms Director Sarah Thomas to discuss the impact technology has on society and how it can be a game-changer across the globe; improving lives and creating a smarter world. Dowling, a Cork, Ireland, native and graduate of Harvard Business School's Advanced Management Program, will also discuss her experience managing an international team focused on innovation in an age of high-speed change.