Verizon Completes SON Trials With Cisco, Ericsson

Verizon is getting with the self-optimizing program with a little help from Cisco and Ericsson.

Dan Jones, Mobile Editor

September 10, 2015

2 Min Read
Verizon Completes SON Trials With Cisco, Ericsson

Verizon's West Coast network vice president says that the operator has now completed trials of self-optimizing network (SON) systems from Cisco and Ericsson as the operator looks to improve and "densify" its network.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), unlike major rival AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), has been relatively quiet on any work it has been doing on SON so far. Brian Mecum, vice president, Network West Area, however, told Light Reading Wednesday that Verizon has completed testing SON systems with Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) and Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC).

"We fully intend to deploy it," Mecum says. SON technology performs multiple tasks, such as automatically detecting when a site is down and routing users to the next-best cell, or enabling cells to share bandwidth when network capacity is limited.

AT&T has been working with Cisco on SON technology for a few years now. (See Cisco to Buy AT&T's Favorite SON Startup.)

For more on LTE, visit the 4G LTE section here on Light Reading.

Mecum's region covers the West coast, Alaska, Hawaii and "flyover states" such as Colorado, Montana and Utah. He says that Verizon has spent the last couple of years "densifying" the network with C-RAN distributed radio technology in major cities like Denver, San Diego and Seattle. (See Time for Some New Acronyms for CRAN)

Cloud-RAN -- or whatever we're calling it these days -- separates the baseband controller from the radios, so that many radios can be controlled by a single controller. Difficulties come in, however, because dark fiber and power have to be run to the remote radioheads (RRH). (See What the [Bleep] Is Fronthaul?.)

Fiber is "harder to get than power," Mecum notes.

Nonetheless, Verizon has been adding capacity with C-RAN around downtown San Francisco and the Bay Area. The carrier has an eye on Super Bowl 50, which will be held in Santa Clara on February 7, 2016, and always puts the pressure on every operator's network.

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

About the Author(s)

Dan Jones

Mobile Editor

Dan is to hats what Will.I.Am is to ridiculous eyewear. Fedora, trilby, tam-o-shanter -- all have graced the Jones pate during his career as the go-to purveyor of mobile essentials.

But hey, Dan is so much more than 4G maps and state-of-the-art headgear. Before joining the Light Reading team in 2002 he was an award-winning cult hit on Broadway (with four 'Toni' awards, two 'Emma' gongs and a 'Brian' to his name) with his one-man show, "Dan Sings the Show Tunes."

His perfectly crafted blogs, falling under the "Jonestown" banner, have been compared to the works of Chekhov. But only by Dan.

He lives in Brooklyn with cats.

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