Feeds

Femto Forum promises very small cells

Tiny technology, tiny industry, tiny forum

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Hot on the heels of news from Netgear, that it is to produce a home gateway with a built-in 3G femtocell, comes the formation of the Femto Forum. The group, which holds its first plenary meeting in Heathrow, London today, has been set up to prevent fragmentation of a decidedly immature industry.

Early members include the various manufacturers of femtocell technology and its associated support services, but the forum stresses that network operators are also queuing up to join: they just can't say who, or when they can supply more details.

Femtocells provide Wi-Fi functionality over 3G networks. For starters, they enable reliable 3G connectivity inside buidlings. The technology puts a very small, low-power transmitter/receiver inside the building and allows your 3G handset to connect to your own local cell and route calls over your ADSL line. The femtocell also connects to the home network, enabling content on the phone to be streamed to devices around the home, such as TVs and stereo systems, as well as giving the user access to all the normal 3G services at up to 7.2Mb/sec (assuming their handset supports HSDPA).

Operator-backing is essential for the success of the technology: the cellcos own the licences for the frequencies used, so without them no-one can deploy femtocells.

Forming an industry body is a sensible move: the business model revolves around cheap consumer hardware which will only happen if standards can be developed to allow mass production of compliant hardware; though with 3G, UMA, IMS and IP already involved it might seem that there are enough standards to go round.

Once the Femto Forum can announce a few operator members, and get them to commit to deployment, then femtocells should have a glorious future; but getting the operators to publicly sign up might prove harder than the forum imagines. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Whitepapers

Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Managing SSL certificates with ease
The lack of operational efficiencies and compliance pitfalls associated with poor SSL certificate management, and how the right SSL certificate management tool can help.