Friday, December 6, 2013

Telstra Tests Carrier Aggregation of 40 MHz (1800 + 2600 MHz) with Ericsson

Telstra demonstrated LTE-Advanced Carrier Aggregation, combining 20 MHz bandwidth within the 1800 MHz band and 20 MHz bandwidth within the 2600 MHz band, to achieve downlink speeds of up to 300 Mbps. The demonstration used Ericsson's commercially released LTE Advanced software.

Telstra plans to deploy the technology on 700 MHz spectrum once that has been freed up by the Digital Dividend.

"The trials we conducted overnight demonstrate the ability to aggregate two channels of 20 MHz spectrum on our commercial network. While the download speeds we achieved of 300 Mbps are very impressive, for Telstra the main outcome is that we will be able to build out the capacity in our network to manage the future wireless data needs of our customers and continue to deliver them the most reliable network speeds and experience," said Mike Wright, Telstra Executive Director Networks.

Thomas Norén, Head of Product Area Radio at Ericsson, said: "We are pleased to show with Telstra the network readiness of LTE Advanced Carrier Aggregation beyond 20 MHz. The delivery of a superior mobile broadband experience remains key as smart device users depend more upon mobile broadband for everyday life. We also look forward to continuing our work with global chipset and handset manufacturers as the Carrier Aggregation ecosystem evolves further."

Nextivity Enhances its Small Cell Signal Boosters with New Processor

Nextivity, a start-up based in San Diego, introduced "ARES", its third generation Cel-Fi Baseband Processor for the indoor wireless coverage market.

ARES is a multi-core RISC processor that will power the next generation of Nextivity’s flagship digital Cel-Fi Smart Signal Boosters. The new processor adds support for LTE devices on LTE networks to deliver optimal indoor signal quality.

Nextivity said its ARES processor also increases the amount of bandwidth operators can boost, giving mobile operators the flexibility to meet the varying needs of both consumer and enterprise customers. The built-in intelligence of the ARES processor also enables automatic configuration for HSPA and LTE networks.

Additional features and functionalities include:

  • Multi-tap, ultra-fast adapting frequency-domain Echo Cancellation – ARES is designed to cope with highly dynamic LTE signaling environments.
  • Signal equalization – Complex, software programmable equalization filters allow for optimization of signal quality under varying radio conditions.
  • Ultra-fast gain control – Dedicated RISC processors enable ultra-fast gain adjustment to help ensure unconditional, network-safe operations.
  • Self-Organizing Networking (SON) capability – A dedicated RISC processor can implement various self-organizing algorithms to support no-touch, plug-and-play operation under any network deployment conditions. Additionally, the SON capability allows for Nextivity’s booster range to be seamlessly deployed as part of larger deployments of small cell networks.
  • 6 RISC cores; double the transistors – ARES's Digital Signal Processors (DSPs) deliver the equivalent performance of 250 Giga multiply–accumulate (MAC) operations per second, 4 times more than its previous generation.
  • Relays up to four 20MHz Cellular RF bands – ARES now supports and automatically configures for any combination of WCDMA, HSPA+ and LTE carriers to deliver optimal indoor signal quality.

“The continuing shift away from landlines to mobile-only homes and offices, coupled with the rise in bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies among businesses, and the burgeoning Internet of Things (IoT) market, makes it even more imperative to have strong and reliable indoor cellular coverage”, says Werner Sievers, President and CEO of Nextivity Inc. “With double the transistors of its predecessor, our third generation processor provides the intelligence, flexibility, and power to handle this growing demand from enterprises and consumers while being fully transparent to, and integrated with, mobile operators’ networks.”

FCC Postpones Spectrum Auction to mid-2015

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler announced a one-year delay in kicking off the Broadcast Television Spectrum Incentive Auction until the middle of 2015.  In a blog posting, Wheeler said additional time is needed for public commentary and for putting in place the rules of the road for the auction, including developing the actual procedures for how the auction will be conducted.

Despite the delay, Wheeler said he is mindful of the national interest in making more spectrum available for use, and the importance of generating funds from the auction for the FirstNet emergency responders network.

  • In September 2012, the FCC voted to approve plans for the first incentive auction to repurpose broadcast spectrum for mobile broadband use.  
Incentive auctions offer financial incentives to broadcasters to put their unused, licensed spectrum up for public auction, including giving broadcasters a portion of the auction proceeds.  The U.S. is the first nation to move ahead with incentive auctions for traditional TV spectrum.

The major outlines of the incentive auction are given as follow in the FCC's NPRM:

(1) a “reverse auction” in which broadcast television licensees submit bids to voluntarily relinquish
spectrum usage rights in exchange for payments.  The reverse auction consists of three broad issues: bid collection, determination of which bids are accepted, and determination of payment amounts to winners.

(2) a reorganization or “repacking” of the broadcast television bands in order to free up a portion of the ultra-high frequency (UHF) band for other uses. Repacking involves reorganizing the broadcast television bands so that the television stations that remain on the air after the incentive auction occupy a smaller portion of the UHF band, subject to interference and other constraints imposed by the Spectrum Act and treaties with Canada and Mexico.   The goal it to configure a portion of the UHF band into contiguous blocks of spectrum suitable for flexible use.

(3) a “forward auction” of initial licenses for flexible use of the newly available spectrum. The forward auction will resemble prior competitive bidding systems that the FCC has utilized,  except that the FCC will not know in advance the amount of spectrum we can make available in the forward auction, the specific frequencies that will be available and, perhaps, the geographic locations of such frequencies.

  • In March 2013, the FCC officially notified the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) at the U.S. Department of Commerce that it plans to commence the auction of licenses in the 1695–1710 MHz band and the 1755–1780 MHz band as early as September 2014. The FCC is required to give notice at least 18 months prior to the commencement of any spectrum auction.
    NTIA recently identified the 1695-1710 MHz band as the 15 megahertz of spectrum between 1675 MHz and 1710 MHz to be reallocated from federal use to non-federal use. The Spectrum Act now requires the Commission to allocate this identified spectrum for commercial use and to license the spectrum by February 2015.

    The FCC also noted that Congress has also directed it to license the 2155-2 180 MHz band, and other bands, by February 2015.

Box.Nets Adds $100 Million in Funding, New Strategic Partners

Box announced $100 million in new venture funding and strategic partnerships with with Itochu Technology Ventures, Macnica, Mitsui USA, MKI, Telefónica Digital and Telstra.  Coatue, DST Global, and existing Box investors also participated.

Box offers a cloud-based content sharing platform with APIs enabling integration into enterprise applications and systems.

"The combination of cloud and mobile technologies creates an entirely new way of working that will fundamentally reshape the IT industry," said Aaron Levie, co-founder and CEO, Box. "Our new partners will help us connect and work with businesses in key global markets as they manage this transition."

Box highlighted a number of milestones, including:

  • More than 20 million users worldwide at more than 180,000 businesses.
  • Deployments with major global companies, such as Schneider Electric, Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc., Rosetta Stone, and eBay Inc.
  • Opening offices in London, Munich and Paris
  • Appointing Katsunori Furuichi as President, KK Box Japan. Furuichi most recently serving as president and CEO of Verisign Japan.