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Will iCloud Stress Wireless Networks Too Far?

Thu, 06/23/2011 - 9:52am
With the growing trend for cloud services, networks must develop new approaches to cope with the demand for mobile broadband warns Cambridge Wireless ahead of its Future of Wireless International Conference this month.

The unveiling last week of Apple’s new iCloud service, along with other recent launches of cloud services from Amazon and Google, reflects the growing trend to store media and other content on-line and make it available to users across all of their connected devices. However, Cloud-based services will put more strain on already struggling wireless networks, says Cambridge Wireless, the leading independent wireless business and technology community. Combined with the rapid growth in smartphones, tablets and other data-rich connected devices, the new generation of cloud services will accelerate demand for mobile broadband and drive the need for changes in the wireless industry.

The impact of iCloud and other emergent cloud services such as Amazon’s Cloud Player and Music Beta from Google, which allow users to store and access apps, pictures, video and music without connecting to a PC, will be one of the major challenges addressed by operators, content providers and device manufacturers at the third Future of Wireless International Conference from 27 – 28 June, www.cambridgewireless.co.uk/futureofwireless.

With consumers increasingly embracing mobile broadband services and little indication that they are willing to fund directly their growing data usage, leading speakers from the likes of Qualcomm Incorporated, BBC, Broadcom, Deutsche Telekom, Huawei, Iridium, Nokia, Microsoft, Ofcom, Reliance and Three, will shed light on the strategies needed to restructure mobile broadband value chains and the next generation wireless technologies and infrastructures.

“While key industry players plan to mitigate the problem by ensuring that the most data-intensive activities are done over Wi-Fi instead of a carrier's wireless network, people will still want to access and download their video, music, photos and apps wherever they are,” said Peter Whale, a board member of Cambridge Wireless and director of Product Management for Qualcomm. “It is clear that there needs to be a step change in how the industry responds to significant growth in data usage, but there is no silver bullet – the solution will be a combination of approaches including the roll-out of new technologies such as multicarrier HSPA+, LTE and Femtocells; new spectrum allocation, off-load onto Wi-Fi; along with the more efficient design of mobile apps and scheduling bulk data downloads during off-peak periods.”

“The Future of Wireless International Conference this year is very timely and puts the spotlight on one of the biggest challenges and opportunities facing the wireless industry,” says Dr Soraya Jones, CEO at Cambridge Wireless. “Everyone in the wireless value chain has a part to play in shaping the new mobile ecosystem that will overcome the increasing stress being placed on our wireless networks while delivering an enhanced experience at a cost that users are prepared to pay.”

The 2011 Future of Wireless International Conference at St John’s College Cambridge will build on the success of last year’s event that attracted over 300 delegates, sponsors and exhibitors representing every part of the wireless value chain. “The conference is designed to provide a dynamic environment for delegates to share and gain insight into the future of the mobile and wireless marketplace, as well as shaping an integrated view of the industry as a whole,” said David Cleevely, chairman of Cambridge Wireless. 

Cambridge Wireless is also grateful for the support of its conference partners, UKTI, ICT KTN, and Discovering Start-Ups, along with its sponsors; Qualcomm, Canadian High Commission and its provincial partners, Rohde & Schwarz, The Technology Partnership (TTP), Broadcom, CommScope, PicoChip, Cambridge Consultants and Aeroflex.


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