Written By Lisa Garza, Cisco Service Provider Marketing, Mobility Solutions
Not many of us would expect to get free Wi-Fi when standing on the top of the mountain at a ski resort. Spark New Zealand (formerly Telecom New Zealand) provides just that to their customers who have come to expect quality of experience everywhere, anytime.
By deploying Cisco Service Provider Wi-Fi, Spark NZ has expanded wireless services to their customers from the Auckland city streets to the top of Coronet Peak, allowing their mobile customers to enjoy access to an additional network as they work and play. The Spark Ventures group works in start-up mode – moving quickly and putting the customer first to offer new services. Their innovation started by putting Wi-Fi in phone boxes on the street, and they proceeded to follow their customers as they grew the network footprint.
In June, I described how Cisco was closing the small cell loop with the rapid integration of both the Ubiquisys and Intucell teams into the Cisco family.
Today I’m pleased to make three announcements that demonstrate the concrete results of all these bright minds coming together:
Cisco has added LTE capability to our Universal Small Cell portfolio. This includes an industry first – a multimode small cell that provides 3G, 4G and carrier-grade Wi-Fi in a single access point – the USC 7734. This is in direct response to requests we’re getting from both our Service Provider and Enterprise customers to integrate robust and secure Wi-Fi with 3G and 4G licensed small cell technology to accommodate connectivity and coverage to a wide family of mobile devices.
A year ago we introduced the Cisco Quantum Software suite based on an architectural construct of an automated, closed loop -- linking network, analytics and policy -- to help Mobile Operators better optimize and monetize their network investments. We announced the network abstraction, analytics, policy and self-optimizing network (SON) platforms. At the Mobile World Congress 2014, we are expanding the software suite in several ways:
Cisco Quantum SON for Small Cells
We’re taking the industry’s most deployed and proven SON solution for multi-vendor, multi-technology macro radio and extending that to multi-vendor Small Cells. This is an industry first.
As the industry evolves, Small cells -- 3G, 4G and Wi-Fi -- will far outnumber macro base stations and are quickly becoming a requirement for broad coverage and capacity at the lowest cost per bit. But some of these benefits are wasted if small cells are not seamlessly coordinated with the rest of the radio network.
By supporting small cells, Cisco Quantum SON now enables true heterogeneous access and seamless experience. And being multi-vendor, operators can include their existing small cell investments, unifying the entire radio network into a single intelligent entity.
As an industry, we are starting to see a convergence of small cells and Wi-Fi to help solve coverage, capacity, and spectrum issues in our increasingly connected, mobile-dominated world. Today more than ever, mobile operators are increasingly realizing that Wi-Fi and small cells must be part of their traditional licensed network in order to realize the future of mobility.
This topic was especially evident during last month’s Small Cell Americas conference in Dallas, Texas. During the conference, I had the opportunity to discuss how small cells and Wi-Fi can work together, which proved especially timely as the Dallas conference also marked the launch by the Small Cell Forum of their Enterprise Release, comprising of 25 documents to help overcome barriers to small cell deployment in the enterprise. Release Two: Enterprise is the result of over nine months of hard work by the Forum and its members!
As small cells and Wi-Fi bring corporate networks and mobile networks closer to each other, IT leaders and service providers are increasingly asking questions about how the convergence of small cells and Wi-Fi coexist, from a product, architecture and business model perspective. Some common questions include: Read More »
By Lisa Garza, Cisco Service Provider Marketing, Mobility Solutions
In the blink of an eye, a Hotspot 2.0 industry milestone was achieved last week. Cisco joined with China Mobile and 15 other operators to provide a Next Generation Hotspot (NGH) Experience to over 400 attendees at the WBA Wi-Fi Global Congress in Beijing.