This year at the LTE Innovation Summit, held in Del Mar, CA attendees received a real-world perspective on the technologies and trends shaping today’s mobile wireless communications industry.
Keynote speaker, Francis Sideco, presented information on long term revolution.

Unlike its predecessors, LTE appears to be living up to it long term promise. With only a few murmurs of 5G in the ether, the current iteration of LTE is only the first step in a series of enhancements aimed at not only the air interface, but also at heterogeneous network topologies, advanced services, and for the first time, potential global standard. However, as with most undertakings of such global magnitude, achieving this vision is an evolution and not an event.

Sideco sits down with Wireless Design and Development (WDD)  in this special edition of the HotSeat, to discuss what lies beyond today’s LTE, and what we as ecosystem participants can do to put the ‘Long Term’ in Long Term Evolution.

WDD: What is the strategy for developing a truly global standard for LTE?

Francis Sideco: We need to start by using innovation to effect evolution. We have to know what other problems need to be solved, and how else can these known problems be addressed. We also need to think about collaboration – who can we work with?

WDD: What are some of the obstacles that current advancements for LTE face?

Sideco: Doing CAT4 and CAT 6 carrier aggregation is not simple. There has only been one company to have commercial success, but there hasn’t been a lot of commercial success from other companies, yet. Within the next year, chipset vendors will be able to provide alternative solutions.

It’s not just a technical thing in trying to get the rest of the ecosystem to be able to address and solve the problem, but it’s also commercial where we need to be able to reduce the cost of certain capabilities, and drive that into the mass market. We are at the stage of implementation and adoption where we are close to mass market, but we need to ask how we can drive this feature capability into a band of devices and services that the majority of people can afford?

WDD: In what ways is the LTE Summit valuable to the ecosystem?

Sideco: The short answer to that is collaboration.

If you take a look at the pre-3G days and who the major power brokers were (Nokia, Motorola), they were heavily engineering driven guys who were vertical integrated – their handsets used their chipsets and their solutions, technically. Back then you could do that because it was the best way to solve problems – you needed to have full control over the entire system.

That’s no longer the case. The new problems that we are trying to solve now, there needs to be a lot of collaboration, and the LTE Innovation Summit helps to bring all of that together in a very productive way.

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Francis Sideco is a Senior Director with the IHS research and analysis organization and is responsible for leading the IHS analyst teams covering wireless and wired/broadband communications and consumer electronics. Francis joined IHS from Comarco Wireless Test Solutions where he was responsible for strategic product direction, product management and product marketing worldwide. Leading a multi-national development team, Sideco had a major part in the development of Comarco’s Seven.Five wireless test system, the first field test system that allows wireless carriers to evaluate, compare and analyze their quality of service from the end user perspective. He has been featured in various articles in major publications such as Forbes, Wall Street Journal, and Bloomberg. Francis received a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Loyola Marymount University.