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Demonstration Reinforces Importance of Standards Adoption in Bringing Femtocells to Mass Market

Tue, 06/16/2009 - 12:39pm
Starent Networks, Corp., picoChip and Continuous Computing announce the industry’s first demonstration of the new 3GPP Iuh standard which is critical to successfully bringing femtocells to mass market.  These industry leaders will showcase a live demonstration of the 3GPP Release 8 Iuh interface between the 3G Home Node-B (HNB) and 3G Home Node-B Gateway (HNB-GW) at the Femtocells World Summit in London, June 23-25, 2009.

The emerging femtocell market provides an opportunity for enterprises and residential users to benefit from extended coverage for improved indoor quality of experience, cost savings for data usage as well as next generation multimedia services leveraging a femtocell’s ability to determine presence, context and location.  Standardization will allow operators to deploy femtocell and network equipment in a multi-vendor environment, thereby opening up competition, accelerating commercial deployments and lowering costs.

The Iuh interoperability demonstration consists of: Starent Networks’ ST40® platform supporting 3G Home Node B Gateway; picoXcell™ femtocell silicon and PHY software from picoChip for 3G Home Node B; and Trillium® femtocell software from Continuous Computing for 3G Home Node B.

The Iuh specification is a key component of an accelerated standards definition process undertaken by the femtocell community over the last 18 months with the aim of smoothly incorporating this genuinely disruptive technology into future communications networks.  Iuh is important because it helps to solve the problem of how a very large number of small wireless cell sites (femtocells) can communicate back into an operator’s network, and on to the global communications infrastructure.

Starting at the beginning of 2008, the Femto Forum took on the task of honing multiple, proprietary implementations of this key communications channel into a single recommendation.  With the co-operation of the entire femtocell community it proved possible to present a proposal to 3GPP in time for incorporation in its Release 8 specification which was finalized in March 2009.  Demonstrating interoperability between products from Starent, Continuous Computing and picoChip, three of the major players in the industry, represents a further milestone on the route to standardization.

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