Thursday, February 19, 2009

Vodafone Confirms 3G Signal Boosters

Vodafone is trialing a new product designed to improve 3G mobile signals in areas of homes and offices which may have lower levels of network coverage. Trials are currently underway in a number of Vodafone markets to assess the potential of the new product. The product is based on technology which consists of a powered booster box connected to a small antenna that amplifies existing 3G signals from the wide area network to offer enhanced reception over a range of up to 9 meters. The antenna is positioned where the mobile 3G network signal is strongest, either inside or outside the home or office and the booster is located inside where an improved signal is required.

During initial trials in Vodafone Egypt, users reported improvements in network performance including enhanced voice call reception and improved 3G data speeds within parts of the building which had previously only been able to offer low coverage levels.

Vodafone said the signal booster product differs from a femtocell in that it strengthens the signal from the existing network rather than creating a new dedicated coverage zone. Vodafone is looking at both technologies to see how they can each meet the individual needs of customers.

In December, Vodafone Spain announced a pilot of femtocell technology with Vodafone Access Gateway. These access gateways connect 3G devices to the core network via broadband DSL and the pilot scheme was rolled out to a limited number of enterprise customers to assess its effectiveness in delivering wireless high-speed data and voice services.


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