I've been reporting on the wireless industry for nearly two decades and never before have I seen backhaul garner so much attention. Finally, backhaul--the transport of wireless traffic from the cell site to the switch--is a hot topic of discussion as wireless operators strive to find better, more economical ways to transport their backhaul traffic.
The reason for the backhaul focus is clear: consumers have finally become enamored with the functionality and ease with which they can access the mobile Internet and download compelling applications. But that increase in mobile data usage has sparked a tremendous amount of data traffic across the network, causing network congestion and overtaxing operators' backhaul assets.
All wireless operators must now invest in more backhaul capacity. In fact, mobile WiMAX provider Clearwire (NASDAQ:CLWR) has said that it will increase its backhaul capacity by 250 percent or more. Likewise, T-Mobile USA has said it will upgrade to fiber backhaul in more than 100 metro areas this year. Meanwhile Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) is increasing its backhaul capacity using gear from its wireline wholesale division, Verizon Global Wholesale, in its wireline footprint. Outside the region it is using backhaul links from a variety of suppliers. And AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T) has said that it plans to deploy enhanced fiber-optic backhaul connectivity to boost its 3G service as well as prepare for its future LTE service.
For operators the challenge is to have a variety of backhaul solutions in their portfolio so they can increase their backhaul capacity without blowing their budget.
FierceWireless decided to take a in-depth look at the various backhaul options available to wireless operators. In this ebook, "Designing a Better Backhaul Network," we look at the challenges and the solutions to the current backhaul dilemma. I hope you enjoy this ebook. Click here to download. --Sue