T-Mobile sinks money into femtocells
Tiny cell vendor finds room for operator cash
T-Mobile Ventures, the investment arm of the network operator, has announced a strategic investment in Ubiquisys, the femtocell manufacturer that already counts Google among its backers.
Neither company is saying how much is being invested, but they are saying "strategic" rather than "significant", and as Ubiquisys raised $25m only seven months ago it seems unlikely it's in desperate need of the cash. So this is more about T-Mobile's endorsement of the company and its technology.
Not that femtocells need endorsing at this point. Just about every operator is trialling the technology, and the first commercial deployments are slipping out. There is still work to be done integrating the IP infrastructure - used for the VoIP backhaul over ADSL lines - with the telecommunications network, which is what the trials are trying to hammer down.
Part of the attraction of femtocells is the way they transition mobile customers into broadband customers. No one in the UK is seriously planning to supply femtocells for use on someone else's broadband, though that will happen in some countries.
In the USA, the killer application has been coverage, for customers who don't get cellular at home. In Europe that's unlikely to interest punters who already enjoy ubiquitous coverage. The operators will save money on backhaul, but that's not going to sell femtocells to the customers, and it's hard to offer voice calls much cheaper than they are.
So in Europe femtocells are going to have to be sold as a data-enabling technology, which is why none of the European trials is bothering with 2G femtos (unlike the US deployment).
Operators are hoping free data at home will encourage users to take up all those services they've been trying to punt over the last decade or so - WAP browsing, etc - and those punters will then want the same services when they're out and about.
It could also see a lot of laptops switching off their Wi-Fi, when the inhouse femtocell provides all the functionality without having to change networks when travelling, which would please many operators. ®
Is this device by any chance a small silver clamshell, with an active flip, voice activated with the words "Kirk to Enterprise!"
So this is a high bandwidth, low frequency device, where no-one has any IPR or freely licenses it, or is it actually WiMAX, the "Air Jordan of air interfaces" eh, that propagates like no other TDD signal can?
Sounds like you need to remember that "Ye cannae change the laws of Physics"
for get femtocell
as much as technology is beneficial . its lifespan is short . because of a new technology
that I am involved in . its been in development for six years , and there are ready on fifth chip
and very shortly their sixth. the technology is using the 802 protocol but as far as the
extensions that information in this time is not available. but what I can to you
is that the technology will allow a 1.5MB up and down no degradation that can penetrate
heavy foliage,and 20 ft. underground,the signal can travel from one tower over flatlands
138 mi. omnidirectional and heavy mountain trains . it can reach 32 mi.
the cost is so cheap to manufacture that the retail price for the 1.5MB will be under $20 a month the long-term contracts no sign of fees free hardware.
the products are labeled by using the word T-1 T-2 T-3
the T-3 will only be $80 a month.
Only for those out in the sticks, eh? WRONG!
I'm in the middle of my town, yet I have crap mobile signal. It hovers around the 1-block level on a Nokia, which makes for frustrating phonecalls to takeout places and the like.
I guess you're used to concrete and brick housing that is a Swiss cheese for mobile signals, not solid sand- and limestone structures that pretty much shield you from any signal whatsoever.
A femto cell would come in really handy to improve my signal, but the company that makes the Oyster femtocell says it is not available for purchase by private individuals as they require an OFCOM license.