Nokia Networks homes in on small cells, teams with HP on NFV

During Nokia (NYSE:NOK) Capital Markets Day 2014 in London, CEO and President Rajeev Suri identified small cells as one of the areas where Nokia Networks will continue to expand and invest.

"When it comes to small cells, I've always said that when the market was there, we would be there," he said during the event, which was webcast. "Now is that time. Our product is superb, with the same features as macro cells, and the capability to bring 4G and Wi-Fi together as a unified radio technology, and that's important."

He also said the company's product portfolio includes a "very capable" indoor product, which is significant given that 80 percent of traffic comes from indoors, and its small cell deployments are uniquely qualified with 3D mapping technologies for precise positioning.

Last week, the company also said it has demonstrated what it calls the world's first small cell LTE-A carrier aggregation of over 200 Mbps to double hotspot capacity.

Over the last month and a half, the vendor has secured 10 new deals, including recently announced contracts with Zain KSA and Vodafone Group. It did not identify the other customers due to non-disclosure agreements, a spokesperson told FierceWirelessTech.

The company claims that by using Nokia Flexi Zone small cells in hotspots and urban areas like outdoor and indoor locations, throughput can be doubled using a single micro or pico base station.  

Nokia Flexi Zone small cells support up to 600 active users or devices to enable operators to meet future growth. Commercial Flexi Zone small cell deployments are already supporting heavy traffic loads of more than 150 active users per cell, the company said in a press release. The installations have also achieved 100 percent availability, even under high traffic load, while offloading 80 percent of traffic from the operator's macro network.

"The market success reflects the ongoing development of our Flexi Zone small cells solution. When we first announced Flexi Zone micro and pico base stations, we did what many pundits thought was impossible by packing a macro sector's worth of capacity into the industry's smallest outdoor small cell and bringing full macro software parity," said Marc Rouanne, executive vice president, mobile broadband, Nokia Networks, in the release "We also promised to show that it would be possible to software upgrade a small cell to LTE-A. Now we've done that too."

If it sounds like Nokia is boasting, well, it is. The company also said it was recently positioned by analyst firm Gartner in the "Leaders" quadrant of the "Magic Quadrant for Small Cell Equipment," which evaluates vendors on completeness of vision and ability to execute.

In other Nokia Networks news, the company is collaborating with HP on a joint telco cloud solution compliant with ETSI NFV principles, designed to provide operators with an open source-based cloud that meets their reliability and availability requirements and accelerates their transition to network function virtualization (NFV) deployments.

The companies plan to extend their existing partnership to provide telco operators with an integrated solution enabling Nokia Networks virtualized network functions (VNFs) to run on a cloud infrastructure layer that integrates HP data center hardware, hypervisor and virtual infrastructure manager, based on HP Helion OpenStack technology, the companies said in a press release.

For more:
- see this webcast
- see this press release and this release
- see this Infoworld article

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