CommScope Blog

Sharing an antenna doesn’t mean giving up control

Posted by Mohamed Nadder Hamdy on June 24, 2016

Network Modernization aerial viewThe practice of network sharing has been a recurring topic of interest in the wireless industry since it was introduced in the early 2000s. The first network sharing agreements were conceived as a way to help European wireless operators offset the high cost of launching 3G service in hard-to-cover areas. Despite the potential for savings, the initial surge of interest in network sharing quickly declined as most operators opted to build their own 3G networks.

Fast forward to 2016 and network sharing is once again a common topic of conversation as operators look for more cost-effective methods to transition to 4G services including LTE and LTE-Advanced. Once again, cost pressures are driving many operators to enter network sharing talks with competitors.

Is it the Internet of Things or Internet for People?

Posted by Tom Murphy on June 23, 2016

Data_signMIT researcher and entrepreneur Kevin Ashton first coined the term “Internet of Things” (IoT)in 1999 while working at Auto-ID Labs. Ashton was referring to a global network of objects connected by radio-frequency identification (RFID). Nearly two decades later, perhaps it’s time to evaluate if IoT really captures what’s happening. Should we re-name IoT to something like “Internet for People”

Consider this: Internet for People gathers the necessary data to make the world’s population more safe and productive, while hopefully enabling medical advancements to help people live with more dignity. We’re also seeing investments on using the Internet for People to make our home here on earth a more environmentally-safe place to live.

Testing the Connections

Posted by Yves Petit on June 22, 2016

Are you ready yet?Imagine a cluster of homes nestled in a cozy, coastal town. A family sits down to watch its favorite streaming show, and the connection is way too slow or doesn’t download at all. And it might have everything to do with the salt in the air

While living in beautiful places like this has its advantages, a downside is the daily saltwater mist that permeates the air. Small but mighty salt particles can wreak havoc on a neighborhood’s fiber distribution hub (FDH) or multi-port service terminal (MST), eroding the connections inside. And there goes movie night.

Empowering Energy Efficiency in Service Provider Networks

Posted by Barbara Ghini on June 21, 2016

One of the best gifts my husband and I received is a robotic vacuum cleaner that we decided to name Ambrogio. We only need to remember to press Ambrogio’s clean button before leaving in the morning. When we come home in the evening, we find our apartment clean. Not only does Ambrogio do a great job, but he is also very parsimonious. In fact, his power consumption is minimal compared to a traditional vacuum cleaner, which is great for our household budget.

No one understands the impact of steep energy costs on budgets like mobile service providers, for whom energy is a top expense. It’s estimated that providers account for $15 billion in annual energy expenditures, or about one percent of all energy consumed worldwide. Caught between rising energy prices and customer demand, that’s only going to increase—both as a factor of cost and as a percentage of use.


CommScope Definitions: What is C-RAN?

Posted by Mike Wolfe on June 17, 2016
C-RAN-compressedThis blog post is part of a series called “CommScope Definitions,” in which we will explain common terms in communications network infrastructure.

Though this blog post is an attempt to define C-RAN—an acronym commonly heard in the wireless industry these days—the term does in fact have a couple of different meanings. The C in C-RAN stands for both “centralized” radio access network (RAN) and also “cloud-based” RAN. They are related concepts, and both involve a new architecture for the network equipment at cell sites.

If it's not broken, don't fix it

Posted by Malik Ishak on June 14, 2016

OPT-Sean-KerrWhen I was a child, I used to love to take things apart, especially the vacuum cleaner. There was one drawback: putting it back together in proper working condition was never easy. My mother used to scold me, “If it’s not broken, don't fix it.” I am sure many of you have similar stories.

Let’s take this concept and put it towards cell sites. If interference like passive intermodulation (PIM) is affecting key performance indicators, then the first course of action is to disassemble the site and test for a faulty component (at the cost of the operator and, ultimately, the customers’ coverage and capacity).

Challenges in the Last Mile

Posted by Gilberto Guitarte on June 10, 2016
FTTH_Connect_SmallAs more people wish for faster broadband service, quicker downloads and seamless streaming video, service providers race to build fiber-to-the-x (FTTx) networks to meet the growing demands. Naturally, these same service providers want to invest wisely while planning for even more demand in the coming years. Still, several challenges lie ahead in the last mile, like speed of deployment, decisions on investments and availability in rural areas. 

Watch Out For Impairments! The 600 MHz Incentive Auction

Posted by Mark Gibson on June 9, 2016
600-Mhz-compressedThe US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is about to embark on the next phase of one of the most complicated and far-reaching auctions in history. The Broadcast Incentive Auction seeks to repurpose the beachfront spectrum in the 600 MHz band from television use to wireless use. The Incentive Auction may ultimately make available up to 126 MHz of valuable wireless airwaves for exciting new 5G services. However, Incentive Auction participants need to make sure that potential post-auction interference concerns are identified and properly addressed.

Complexity is the Root of All Necessity

Posted by Jason Bautista on June 8, 2016

Excel_IT_thumbnailThis is one installment in a series of blog posts on automated infrastructure management (AIM). Previous posts discussed benefits of the ISO/IEC 18598 standard; how AIM helps with IoT, energy consumption and risk mitigation, and trends and standards that are driving AIM adoption.

In previous blog posts, we talked about the benefits of implementing an AIM system and that the benefits can be classified as either intrinsic and extrinsic. We also talked about application program interfaces, automated documentation, and discovery of connections within the networks. However, we did not talk about the reason an AIM standard is needed, let alone why systems like this exist. 

The Evolution of the Data Center to the Edge

Posted by Dave Tanis on June 7, 2016

Cloud_Data_Center(1)My first encounter with a data center was a trip down to the basement of our office building, where the DEC PDP-11 sat ensconced behind a big glass wall:  a mass of tape drives, processors and peripherals that was connected to the dumb terminals sitting back in our offices.  I further date myself by adding that it accepted punch cards.

Not too long after the PDP-11 was retired, all kinds of crazy things started happening.  Servers appeared in lab rooms, dedicated to specific projects.   Some departments had their own IT networks.   In many cases, companies had no idea about how many IT assets they had, and where they were located. 

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