T-Mobile US (NYSE:TMUS) intends to deploy Eden Rock Communications' self-organizing network (SON) technology nationwide to improve network services.
Founded in 2007, Eden Rock is based in Washington state, as is T-Mobile, Deutsche Telekom's U.S. wireless arm. The vendor's Eden-Net library of SON modules uses cloud-based software intelligence to enhance the performance of 2G, 3G and LTE networks. The SON product works with radio access networks (RANs) provided by multiple vendors to automate the configuration, optimization and maintenance of large-scale modern networks.
SON also is used to stand for self-optimizing network. There are three flavors of SON: centralized, distributed and hybrid. Eden Rock, which claims to have 20 issued and 70 pending SON-related patents, describes its platform as centralized SON.
The vendor said that during T-Mobile's SON evaluation process, Eden-Net "simultaneously delivered fewer dropped calls, increased throughput, and reduced leakage--even as measured across entire markets, which had been previously well optimized."
According to Grant Castle, vice president of engineering services and QA for T-Mobile, "with Eden Rock's SON solution we have seen improvements in our network. Furthermore, the operating system framework should enable us to roll out additional SON modules for even further network gains and operational improvements throughout 2014 and beyond."
SON is becoming a key tool for operators as they struggle to handle the growing complexity of their mobile networks. SON technology can be used in multiple ways, including network self-configuration using automatic neighbor relation (ANR) functionality, self-optimization, including traffic load balancing, and self-healing of network problems. ANR, included in 3GPP Release 8, has been described as the most widely deployed SON feature in 3G and 4G.
Ron Marquardt, vice president of technology for technology innovation and architecture at Sprint (NYSE: S), recently told FierceWirelessTech that Sprint is examining SON architectures with an eye toward deploying SON at some point. He cautioned, however: "We're not even close to making any decisions, much less any announcements."
Though many associate SON with LTE, more than 80 percent of mobile operators worldwide are using SON for 3G/HSPA/HSPA+ optimization, according to Infonetics Research. The firm predicts the optimization and SON software market will be worth nearly $5 billion by 2017.
- see this Eden Rock release
T-Mobile's 'data-strong' network gains LTE coverage, bandwidth
Sprint's role as technology outlier may keep it on a road less traveled
SON for mobile backhaul to rake in $700M annually by 2021, report says
Amdocs' new SON solution leverages expertise from Actix, Celcite
Report: SON market gaining 3G momentum, will reach $5B by 2017