To accelerate its entry into the 3G femtocell market, Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) has signed a co-development deal with Pirelli Broadband. The agreement will see Pirelli's femto-enabled Multiplay equipment coupled with NSN's home access software with the aim being to allow operators to introduce femtocell-based services to home and small office environments.
The Pirelli Multiplay box offers broadband support for ADSL2+, VDSL2 and FTTH, together with the company's Epicentro middleware and applications platform. Pirelli said that its Epicentro software manages the co-existence of 3G handsets with Pirelli's access gateway, IPTV set top box and 3G femtocells.
Separately, ABI Research claimed that vendors attempting to ramp up the sales of 3G femtocells will only have limited early success with just 100,000 units being forecast to ship this year. Noting that more than 20 femtocell development trials are currently underway, ABI said development of the units is not likely to see shipment volumes until 2010, when shipments will likely total tens of millions. "By 2010, femtocell silicon solutions will have been optimised to the degree that US$100 price points for femtocell access points will be within reach, and OEMs' order books will have the volume to sustain critical wholesale price reductions," said Stuart Carlaw, ABI Research's VP and research director. "The turning point for this market will be late 2009."
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