Wireline and wireless switching vendor Taqua is branching out into the wireless backhaul market by proposing a new platform that can be used in new cellular topologies that that may include picocells, outdoor femtocells and WiFi hotspot. Rather than replacing the backhaul network though, the platform would function as a last-mile extension for backhaul linking up remote sites.
John Hoadley, Taqua's wireless CTO and former wireless CTO of Nortel, told Connected Planet that providing backhaul for groups of small cells is significantly more expensive than providing a huge link to one large cell site. As such, Taqua's architecture relies on short-distance links using a variation of WiMAX to enable an operator to overlay a low-cost backhaul network over the macro network.
"We're at a point that devices and applications are miles ahead of the infrastructure-it's usually the other way around," Hoadley said. In order to meet those increasing demands for wireless data, operators are having to deploy more infrastructure, creating more wireless carriers to support more traffic on the same sites. But the logical thing is for operators to shrink down their networks, spreading the increased traffic among many more much smaller sites, Hoadley said. "We're on a path where we have to do very dense deployments using small cells," Hoadley said. "It's got to be about small cell sites and to do that we need better backhaul."
However, in order to function properly the system must utilize licensed spectrum that typicall has been designated for broadband access. But Hoadley pointed out that much of the TDD spectrum that its backhaul system would use is already lying dormant at operators that have deployed their 3G and 4G networks over frequency division duplexing bands.
- see this Connected Planet article
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