Study: Femtocell business case depends on how operators target customers

Signals Research Group is pointing to considerable cost savings associated with offloading data traffic onto femtocells. The firm's recent study finds the costs savings associated with offloading as little as 1.4 GB of HSPA data or 1.3 GB of EV-DO Rev. A data per month onto a femtocell justifies an operator offering a customer a free femtocell.

Moreover, the firm concluded that healthy financial returns from femtocell deployment are not dependent an any single factor. "Cost savings, incremental revenue, and retention benefits enable femtocells to be deployed successfully with a wide variety of assumptions," said J. Randolph Luening, vice president of Wireless Economics at Signals Research. "Instead, the business case is highly dependent on the attributes of the targeted customer segment and the specific customer proposition put forth by the operator."

As a result, operators in different regions of the world are likely to change their femtocell marketing strategies based on local conditions. Operators in large geographic regions, such as North America, may leverage femtocells to provide improved coverage, while operators in regions such as Western Europe where calling plans are more expensive may place a greater emphasis on free calls.

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