Ericsson’s new indoor picocell to boost broadband coverage in smaller sites

Ericsson has announced the launch of the RBS6402, the first indoor picocell that is set to deliver 300 Mbps LTE speeds with carrier aggregation that addresses the performance requirements and economic imperatives of smaller building and venues on a future-proof platform with a compact, tablet-sized footprint.

In today’s mobile workplace the tenfold growth of mobile data traffic by 2019, increasing enterprise adoption of Network-as-a-Service models, and new device-to-device and M2M applications, present both opportunities and challenges for mobile operators.

To satisfy their consumer and business customers, grow in mobile enterprise and expand into new industries, mobile operators must deliver consistently high performance indoor app coverage deep into buildings of all sizes and then back out onto the street again.

Patrick Weibel, responsible for Mobile Data Networks, Swisscom, says: “In our efforts to meet the increasing demand for access to mobile data within buildings, brought about by new mobile enterprises and M2M opportunities, our focus is on cost-effective offerings for smaller buildings. With the all-in-one small cell RBS 6402 from Ericsson we can reduce our costs without compromising performance and remain competitive.”

Daryl Schoolar, Principal Analyst of Wireless Infrastructure, Ovum, says: “The indoor area, especially serving enterprise users, has started to heat up when it comes to small cells. It is the area where Ovum has seen the highest level of activity for small cell solutions. Unfortunately, many of those solutions create another network silo for the mobile operator as they aren’t fully integrated or coordinated with the rest of the network. By deploying small cells as an almost separate network the mobile operator cannot fully leverage the overall network performance. Ericsson has addressed this with its new small cell that offers feature parity and tight coordination with the macro cell.  At the same time the RBS6402 is a very strong small cell product on its own, with a combined feature set I don’t see any other small cell offering at this time.”

As the first picocell to support LTE speeds of up to 300 Mbps with carrier aggregation, the RBS 6402 delivers twice the capacity and speed. Flexible and future proof, it’s the only multi-carrier, concurrent multi-standard (LTE, WCDMA and Wi-Fi), and mixed-mode small cell to support 10 different bands, with two 3GPP standards (LTE and WCDMA) plus 802.11ac Wi-Fi operating simultaneously to deliver higher peak rates and capacity.

It integrates LTE and 3G radio access with Wi-Fi using Ericsson’s industry-first Real-Time Traffic Steering to dynamically and seamlessly shift the mobile device connection between networks, delivering the best user experience and optimizing network resources. It also leverages LTE-Advanced and supports VoLTE. Remote software activation of frequencies, bands and features eliminates the need for site visits in conjunction with refarming or acquiring new spectrum.

Plug-and-play installation using existing ethernet for power and connectivity and fast remote commissioning means the cells fully install and are network-live within 10 minutes. Cloud-based aggregation and gateway functionality reduce onsite equipment requirements and associated capex, while enabling consistent management across both indoor and outdoor network.

Ericsson’s comprehensive range of small cell and carrier Wi-Fi solutions – including the new RBS 6402 — ensures that mobile operators can address any mobile broadband coverage and capacity requirement today and in the future. Optimized for indoor environments up to 5,000 square meters (roughly 54,000 square feet), the RBS 6402 packages four 250 milliwatt radios in a sleek 2.8 liter form factor that installs and auto-integrates in minutes.

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