This post is by Stephane Daeuble, senior product marketing manager for Small Cells at Nokia Networks.
Happy New Year, everyone! With myriad points of glowing lights dancing in colourful patterns across the sky, it can be safely said that fireworks are a crowd favorite. And where fireworks appear, there are always cameras ready to record their fleeting existence. LOTS of cameras.
That is certainly the case at the Busan Fireworks Festival pictured here, the largest of its kind in the world. This year it attracted an amazing 1.5 million people along a 1.2 km stretch of beach. Many of them recorded the displays and shared immediately with friends – the peak hour of the event saw 338 GB of data uploaded.
These are staggering figures that any network would do well to serve. Macro cells at the event supported 570 users each, with those provided by Nokia being the only ones able to keep up with the demand.
Coverage to capacity with small cells
Small cells are growing in popularity, with operators using them to fill in coverage gaps for the last 20 years. Small cells are used mostly to enhance capacity in busy areas and where subscribers expect the best performance. And we’re already seeing some deployments of 150 active users per cell in mass events similar to Busan. This is a figure that is clearly beyond the capabilities of most small cell solutions on the market and will only continue to grow.
Nokia’s Flexi Zone solution can already serve up to 600 users per cell. Combining a small size with the power of a macro cell, it offers a winning combination of coverage and capacity that means fewer cells are needed to serve the needs at mass events.
But Flexi Zone is not just for the great outdoors – indoor small cell deployments are also taking off in a big way, both for enterprises and public areas. Although enterprises require less capacity, the ability to serve higher numbers of users is still a key requirement. With Flexi Zone Indoor Pico base stations able to support up to 400 users per cell, denser, busier parts of the building can be served with ease. And high capacity also means RAN sharing is feasible, supporting several operators’ subscribers with a single node – a critical proposition to complement or replace DAS in large public indoor locations.
As small cells move from coverage to capacity, with Flexi Zone, Nokia is meeting these emerging needs. Whatever stage operators need to perform on, indoors or outdoors, when the lights go on and the cameras roll, Nokia small cell solutions are ready for action.
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