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Future of Wireless International Conference focuses on network stress relief

by david.nunes

Future of Wireless International Conference focuses on network stress relief

“Networks Under Stress”

June 30th 2011 – Over 300 leading experts from around the world converge on Cambridge to explore the growing issue of wireless ‘networks under stress’ with speakers from Qualcomm Incorporated, BBC, Microsoft, Nokia, Huawei, Reliance, Philips, Broadcom , Everyone Everywhere and more

The third Future of Wireless International Conference kicked off on 27th June in Cambridge, England, focused on the theme of ‘networks under stress’. With the growing popularity of data-rich mobile devices and the increasing trend toward cloud computing, the two-day conference organised by Cambridge Wireless, has attracted over 300 leading experts from around the world to discuss the pressures on already struggling wireless networks and to identify real-world technical solutions and new business models.

In his opening keynote address, Roberto di Pietro, VP of Product Marketing and Business Development, Qualcomm, looked at what is driving data usage so dramatically and how this growth can be managed. Roberto described how innovations that increase the capacity of existing networks reduce the signaling load between devices and networks and maximize the benefit of new spectrum, which can provide significant improvement to network operator infrastructures. Mr. BongGoon Kwak, Senior Vice President, The head of Mobile Business Fast Incubation Business Department Mobile Business Group in Korea Telecom, then explored how the ‘Big Bang’ explosion in data usage has social, economic and business impacts, which in turn help us to understand how new value chains and network operator business models need to adapt to take advantage of the opportunities presented in this emerging ‘Smart Era’.

“The high quality of speakers and delegates from around the world reflects the relevance and urgency of our theme for this year’s Future of Wireless International Conference,” said David Cleevely, Chairman of Cambridge Wireless, the leading international wireless forum. “With wireless networks under increasing stress there is a need for radical change; but the good news from the conference is that there is a clear commitment and from all parts of the wireless industry to meet these business and technology challenges.”

The afternoon started with a session looking at the need to change regulations and technologies and how the allocation of ‘new’ spectrum such as TV white space will require new approaches if it is to be harnessed successfully. “White Space radio is in fact a very ‘grey’ area,” said Tim Newton from Neul: “White space offers up to 150MHz of high quality spectrum, more than enough to build a wide area network, without incurring the huge cost of licensing spectrum. But operators and equipment makers need to address fundamental RF issues to harness its full potential. It is essential to avoid interference with sensitive TVs and wireless microphones, for example; and far from being empty, virtually every white space channel contains levels of co-channel interference that are disastrous for traditionally designed wireless systems.”

Dr Sam Leinhardt, co-founder and CEO of Penthera focused on other strategies to handle the increasing demand for mobile data: “Established network data capacity solutions can only go so far. Time shifting heavy payloads to off peak times, bearer shifting to out-of-band networks and avoidance of heavily loaded cells are among the strategies that are now available and can provide a cost effective addition to traditional approaches.”

Other speakers on day one at the Future of Wireless International Conference included Edward Zhou , of Huawei Technologies; Kanwar Chadha, Chief Marketing Officer and Board Member of Cambridge Silicon Radio; and Mr R Swaminathan, Vice-President of Reliance Communications, the largest wireless provider in India. “Mobile communication is a major driver of rapid economic growth and poverty reduction in India,” said Mr Swaminathan. “There are over 1.2 billion mobile phones in the country and there will soon be more phones in rural areas than towns and cities. In urban areas the challenge is to design networks that can squeeze more traffic with limited spectrum; while in rural areas it is to develop low cost, low power, zero maintenance systems to develop e-health, e-learning and e-banking products for rural markets.”

Most attending the conference agreed that the impact of new Google Chomebooks along with Apple’s iCloud and other emergent cloud services such as Amazon’s Cloud Player and Music Beta from Google will be one of the major challenges facing operators, content providers and device manufacturers. Peter Whale, a board member of Cambridge Wireless and director of Product Management for Qualcomm said, “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.”

Along with the keynotes, the 2011 Future of Wireless Conference included hands-on workshops, facilitated brainstorms, panels, business matching, exhibition zones and the innovation hothouse, which provided wireless start-ups with a pitching platform.
For more information go to: www.cambridgewireless.co.uk/futureofwireless

Cambridge Wireless is also grateful for the support of its conference partners, UKTI, Digital Communications KTN, and Discovering Start-Ups (a programme supported by EEDA), along with its sponsors; Qualcomm, Canadian High Commission, Rohde & Schwarz, The Technology Partnership (TTP), Broadcom, Cambridge Consultants, Aeroflex and EEDA.

About Cambridge Wireless
Cambridge Wireless is a leading industry forum and vibrant community with a rapidly expanding network of companies actively involved in the development and application of wireless technologies. In addition to high level networking dinners and events, a strong educational programme and business development activities, Cambridge Wireless runs the annual Future of Wireless International Conference along with the prestigious Discovering Start-Ups programme and competition to support emerging, innovative wireless companies.

Over 15 Special Interest Groups focused on specific technologies and market sectors, also provide opportunities for members to meet, form partnerships to exploit new commercial opportunities, and share knowledge and information about the latest industry trends and hot topics. Cambridge Wireless has partnerships with other leading industry clusters and organisations around the world to extend its international reach and to keep members up to date with the latest global developments and business opportunities. For more information, please visit www.cambridgewireless.co.uk


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