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Analysis: 4G Backhaul, accept the challenge

February 22, 2010 10 comments

4GBackhaul Analysis


1. What is happening with the backhaul?

Numerous statistics and forecasts at Internet show that the use of data services on the mobile phone is growing up very fast. Several factors have helped this growing:

  1. The increase of smartphones sales in the last 3 years.
  2. The better performance of 3G-3’5G in comparison with GPRS in terms of download & upload speed.
  3. The user trends toward web 2.0 and social networks: Facebook, Twitter, FlickR and others have generated the demand of “Internet everywhere” in the users.
Increment of users with data plans

Increment of users with data plans

The increase in the number of data traffic users is good news for the telecom carriers, more users mean more money, but this increase also brings them three problems:

  1. More users mean more data traffic to handle, so carriers need more bandwidth. They have to upgrade their networks: in the access and in the backhaul.
  2. New services usually require more bandwidth. Web surfing is not sufficient. Telecom operators are facing a big challenge: Users want to watch videos on demand (YouTube, Vimeo…), talk with VoIP services (Skype), listen to real time music (Spootify), etc.
  3. The ARPU (Average Revenue Per User) seems to be decreasing in the present scenario.

These three facts (and some other ones) start to be a problem to theperformance and to the value of the 3G nets, which are not prepared for such a huge demand of data.

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