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ArrayComm Bursts in UK

LONDON – Mobile InfraTech – Broadband wireless vendor ArrayComm Inc. is trialing its iBurst service in Oxford, England, as it attempts to build on earlier Australian success, Unstrung has learned.

Earlier this week ArrayComm’s first commercial iBurst customer, Personal Broadband Australia Pty. Ltd. (PBBA), extended its service to the cities of Brisbane, Canberra, and Melbourne, following an initial launch in Sydney last March (see ArrayComm Touts Sydney Trial, iBurst Launches in Oz, and ArrayComm Goes Live in Oz). [Ed. note: We understand Cocklebiddy is still waiting.]

“We offer speeds of 1 Mbit/s per user,” PBBA’s CEO, Jim Cooney, told a conference today. “We are moving to 2 Mbit/s in the next six to nine months, and beyond that we’ll see 4 to 8 Mbit/s in the next two to three years... We will cover 75 percent of the [Australian] population and 90 percent of businesses.”

Cooney then casually let slip the fact that ArrayComm has the U.K. firmly in its sights.

“Internationally, Australia is up and running. A trial was conducted in France last year, and South Africa is building a network that’s ready for launch [see ArrayComm Bursts into SA]. Trials are also underway in the U.K. and the U.S.A. where there is significant national interest. In fact, this morning I logged onto the first iBurst base station in the U.K. which is currently operational in Oxford.”

ArrayComm declines to comment on the Oxford deployment. "We're keeping our lips sealed on that one," says director of marketing Steven Glapa.

The iBurst system uses “unpaired," or time-division duplex (TDD), technology that allows one communications channel to be used for both upstream and downstream traffic. In contrast, frequency-division duplex (FDD), the flavor used by the major 3G systems such as UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System), uses two separate channels for sending traffic back and forth. This makes it somewhat of a spectrum glutton compared with TDD.

— Justin Springham, Senior Editor, Europe, Unstrung

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fivefingerknuckleshuffle 12/5/2012 | 1:09:43 AM
re: ArrayComm Bursts in UK That guy is clueless!
blephen 12/5/2012 | 1:08:57 AM
re: ArrayComm Bursts in UK
imho: this is great news from the most advanced wireless broadband technology in the world. iburst wins the bits-per-hz-per-second-per-dollar-per-person-per-mile contest...by a kilometre.
biotch 12/5/2012 | 1:08:54 AM
re: ArrayComm Bursts in UK where do you draw these conclusions from??
freetoair 12/5/2012 | 1:08:45 AM
re: ArrayComm Bursts in UK obviously an arraycom employee draing these conclusions for some cheap marketing
freetoair 12/5/2012 | 1:08:44 AM
re: ArrayComm Bursts in UK obviously an arraycom employee drawing these conclusions for some cheap marketing
lrmobile_kerton 12/5/2012 | 1:08:00 AM
re: ArrayComm Bursts in UK Yeah. I like the specs of iBurst on paper, but why is it trial, trial, trial, but only one commercial launch, PBA...in which the investments came mostly from Arraycomm and Kyocera, the solution provider themselves. Also, if it's so great, how come the Aus PBA service is priced at about US$112 a month, with a max download of .5 Gig. Is that the lowest pricing this technology can support?
ramesh_mantha 12/5/2012 | 1:07:56 AM
re: ArrayComm Bursts in UK disclosure: I work for one of Arraycom's competetitors so you can assume that anything I say is hopelessly biased. that said...

I checked on the pricing info and iBurst costs consumers a $500 setup fee and $140/month, with a 500 MByte bandwidth cap. That's pretty bloody expensive. To be fair about the trial, trial, trial situation, Arraycom is hardly unique. All the BWA players are in the same boat right now, the customers just aren't whipping out their chequebooks. Especially when WIMAX is just around the corner, with it's 1 GB/s capacity at 100 km radius (apparently it'll even get you laid:)).
freetoair 12/5/2012 | 1:07:53 AM
re: ArrayComm Bursts in UK mantha,

so are you jumping into WiMAX or not?

assume you are proprietary - do you see any real technology advantages? or is WiMAX just the promise of lower cost CPEs driven by Intel and other chipset mfgs?
ramesh_mantha 12/5/2012 | 1:07:52 AM
re: ArrayComm Bursts in UK I don't see a compelling technnology difference between the various offerings. My one impression after working on this stuff (wireless MANs)for 5 years is that all the religious arguments about OFDM, CDMA, etc. are all pretty marginal. Yes each technology has its pros and cons but the differences are overstated. That being said, I do have some significant concerns with certain elements of WIMAX technology (particularly related to its applicability to indoor, non-line of sight applications). The UL link budget is a big problem in any system and I believe they compound it with the choice of TDMA in the UL (yes I know WIMAX is OFDM but it's OFDM, not OFDMA, the UL multiple access is still TDM). If you work the link budget, TDM has big problems compared to CDMA and FDMA).

And the UL link budget is the big deal-killer with regards to the business case of all wireless MAN systems since it becomes the limiting factor in cell radius. I snicker when I see the various ridiculous numbers for WIMAX cell radius and data rates given what I know about DL EIRP limits (mostly regulatory) and UL EIRP limits (cost, max CPE power constrained) and coverage in the real world.

Of course, we all the better technology doesn't always win. Lower cost CPEs are important to the business case, as is having multiple vendors (though the jury's out on just how much the customers are concerned about the later). WIMAX offers the potential of cheap CPEs but I'm not sure how much of business case differentiator that is.

One other thing, WIMAX is all about the PHY and MAC. Yes a cheap PHY/MAC chipset is important but that's a far stretch from having a full RAN that can offer turnkey service delivery capabilities to a carrier. What about RRM? network management? Core networks, etc. etc. There's a lot more to a real BWA system than just a PHY and MAC. And let's not start about voice. Trust me, getting VoIP to not suck over BWA systems is not easy. People are going to find that out the hard way.
lonestar_wimax 12/5/2012 | 1:07:49 AM
re: ArrayComm Bursts in UK Thanks for the post. Based on your statement- "And the UL link budget is the big deal-killer with regards to the business case of all wireless MAN systems since it becomes the limiting factor in cell radius. I snicker when I see the various ridiculous numbers for WIMAX cell radius and data rates given what I know about DL EIRP limits (mostly regulatory) and UL EIRP limits (cost, max CPE power constrained) and coverage in the real world. "

Why is the link budget the real killer? Is it the large number of cell sites that must be built to compensate for the small link budget? How does varying the mix of licensed vs. unlicensed spectrum (5Ghz vs 900MHz) affect the number of cells in the business case? Suggestions for inmproving the case?
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