Feature Article

May 06, 2014

LTE Metrocell Deployment Expected to Rise Substantially Over the Next Five Years

Today's mobile phone carriers are increasingly turning to using LTE Metrocells for their wireless backhaul solutions. This is largely due to the fact that mobile data is growing at an unprecedented rate, and one of the easiest ways to contain the explosion of use is through the small cell deployment of metrocell systems. Metrocells are easily deployed in areas where mobile data service is spotty or otherwise difficult for a wireless signal to penetrate, and a recent study conducted by iGR forecasts that the next five years will see a massive increase in the use of metrocells, expanding with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 146 percent.

“Both non-line-of-sight (NLOS) and point-to-point (PTP) / point-to-multipoint (PTM) wireless backhaul solutions will be deployed within LTE metrocells throughout the forecast period,” said iGR president and founder Iain Gillott, when asked to comment about the study. “Our forecast shows a strong increase in wireless backhaul to support LTE metrocell deployments across a wide range of locations and implementation options.” The study, titled Wireless Backhaul Opportunities and Issues for Small Cell Architectures, notes that there is a wide array of wireless backhaul technologies available, and that the main North American market drivers are pushing for LTE metrocell deployment solutions.

Metrocells are appealing to mobile operators for several reasons. For starters, they are cheap to install, which means that operators can strategically place them wherever they are needed to add capacity to a mobile data network. This helps improve the end user quality of experience (QoE) immensely, especially because metrocells can be placed in indoor locations, which have been notoriously difficult areas to deliver wireless data.

iGR is a company focused on delivering excellent market research consultation with a focus on the wireless and mobile industry, so it is safe to say that their research on the market is indicative of trends in the future as a whole. Metrocells may be the next best thing for delivering mobile data networks in hard to reach places, so it is unsurprising that mobile carriers are expected to deploy them en masse.

Edited by Rory J. Thompson

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