Feeds

Femto Forum promises very small cells

Tiny technology, tiny industry, tiny forum

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

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. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Same old iPad? NO. The new 'soft SIMs' are BIG NEWS
AppleSIM 'ware to allow quick switch of carriers
Arab States make play for greater government control of the internet
Nerds told to get lost in last-minute power grab bid at UN meeting
Brits: Google, can you scrape 60k pages from web, pleeease
Hey, c'mon Choc Factory, it's our 'right to be forgotten'
Of COURSE Stephen Elop's to blame for Nokia woes, says author
'Google did have some unique propositions for Nokia'
It's even GRIMMER up North after MEGA SKY BROADBAND OUTAGE
By 'eck! Eccles cake production thrown into jeopardy
Mobile coverage on trains really is pants
You thought it was just *insert your provider here*, but now we have numbers
Don't mess with Texas ('cos it's getting Google Fiber and you're not)
A bit late, but company says 1Gbps Austin network almost ready to compete with AT&T
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.