Monday, August 29, 2011

Ericsson's North American Analyst Forum

by James E. Carroll
Ericsson hosted an all-day North American Analyst Forum in San Jose, California to discuss key industry trends and the company's strategic positioning. Speakers included Håkan Eriksson , Group Chief Technology Officer and President of Ericsson Silicon Valley; Martin Ljungberg, Jan Häglund, Jan Ögren, Stefan Hedelius, Todd Ashton, Björn Ekelund, and Mats Norin. The presentation materials are online.

Some highlights from the event:

  • About 85% of the world's population is covered by 2G networks and 35% covered by 3G networks.

  • GSM subscriptions will start to decline in 2013 as the number of HSPA and LTE subscribers accelerate.

  • LTE is expected to reach 35% of the global population in 2016, while HSPA reaches about 80%.

  • LTE-Advanced testing underway in Kista, Sweden is achieving 1 Gbps peaking rates using 8x8 MIMO with most locations in the town achieving 300 Mbps or more.

  • Ericsson expects operators will deploy heterogeneous networks with a mix or macro, pico, femto and Wi-Fi technologies.

  • In the home, Wi-Fi is better than femtos.

  • Picocells are better than Wi-Fi for local capacity coverage.

  • Ericsson sees the Cloud business as a major opportunity.

  • Software defined networking offers great potential to break up the old routing paradigm into a new, virtualized network built on standard components and interfaces. This could enable a decoupling of services from infrastructure.

  • Ericsson sees significant efficiency gains coming from Coordinated multipoint (CoMP) technologies, especially in the uplink.

  • Coverage and speed are clear differentiators for mobile operators.

  • Once subscription growth rate tapers off, service differentiation will be the key to success for mobile operators.

  • Ericsson confirms Smart Services Router (SSR) on track for delivery in Q4.

  • Ericsson plans to release smaller, 6-slot and 10-slot versions of Smart Services Router in 2012. The SSR will offer a capacity of 16 Tbps per system and feature 20 slots with 400 Gbps full-duplex capacity each. The Smart Services Router (SSR) is being positioned as a "multi-application" platform for advanced services on both fixed access and broadband wireless access. Specific blades will deliver processing power for applications, including: video (caching), mobility (mobile gateway), business and residential services with powerful DPI and policy enforcement.

  • Expect more innovation in MPLS-based mobile backhaul, packet+optical+microwave.

  • Some carriers in SE Asia already using advanced policy control for Facebook on a per minute basis.

  • Ericsson now ranks No.8 in IT services (IBM, HP, Fujitsu, CSC, Accenture, Capgemini, Hitachi, Ericsson...)

  • Ericsson is managing networks that serve 800 million subscribers worldwide.

  • Of the outsourced networks that Ericsson operates, 50% of nodes are non-Ericsson boxes.

  • Ericsson is looking forward to its pending acquisition of Telcordia.

  • By 2015, About 54% of total handsets will be smartphones.

  • ST-Ericsson's HSPA+ sales increased 20% sequentially in Q2.

  • ST-Ericsson is now sampling its M7400 modem chip, which support LTE FDD/TDD, HSPA+ and TD. It is an 8 band radio solution with VoLTE support.

  • Ericsson is holding to its forecast of 50 billion connected devices in 2020.

  • For M2M, HSPA modules are cheap compared to LTE module pricing. Also, LTE data plan pricing is much more than HSPA.

  • In addition, David Small, CTO of Verizon Wireless, presented at the event. Some highlights from his presentation:

  • The Verizon Wireless LTE footprint now covers 161 million people in its footprint. This will increase to 185 million by the end of the year.

  • The network uses a multivendor approach. For the RAN, Alcatel-Lucent and Ericsson are the key suppliers. For the Enhanced Packet core, vendors include Alcatel-Lucent, Cisco/Starent, and Ericsson. For IMS, key vendors include Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, NSN and Tekelec.

  • The LTE is delivering on all of the performance metrics it promised.

  • Verizon Wireless is committed to ecosystem innovation and now has Innovations Centers in San Francisco and Waltham, MA., along with a 4G Venture Forum in New Jersey to help fund new ideas.