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Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Impact of Mobile Computers and Smartphones on CDMA 2000 Networks

Over the last decade the wireless industry has witnessed tremendous growth. During a recent one year period, voice traffic increased by twelve percent and mobile data traffic more than tripled worldwide. This growth trend is expected to continue, with some forecasts suggesting that worldwide mobile data traffic will surpass voice traffic by 2011 and increase ten-fold by 2015. While mobile operators may look forward to the revenue opportunities that mobile data presents, they must also be prepared to deal with the many challenges that it offers while continuing to deliver more efficient voice services to their customers.

As networks become congested with mobile data traffic and the underlying signaling traffic inherent to the “chattiness” of numerous smartphone applications, the user experience can degrade to unacceptable levels. Slow network response times, low data rates and dropped calls are just some of the undesirable characteristics of a network that is strained to its limits. Historically, operators had to add more network capacity by deploying new radio carriers in unused spectrum or build new cell sites specifically for capacity purposes. While these actions cannot always be avoided, they are not always practical, in particular if an operator has limited spectrum resources. Further, unless an operator has already fully optimized its network to maximize the amount of traffic that it can support, these actions can (and should) be avoided.

The CDMA2000 technology roadmap provides operators with an assortment of options that they can leverage to deliver considerably higher volumes of voice and data traffic over their existing networks which will further enhance the user experience. To varying degrees these features require only modest changes to existing network infrastructure (e.g., software upgrades) or they are inherent features that are already being included in the chipset roadmap. Operators should initially ensure that their networks have been fully optimized for the types of voice and data traffic that they are experiencing in their networks. In many cases, relatively simple changes, such as adjusting network parameter settings, pertaining to connection management and signaling overhead, can improve network performance and the user experience.

This paper examines the numerous implications associated with the explosive growth of mobile data and signaling traffic due to the widespread and growing popularity of smartphones, tablets and other mobile computing platforms. READ FURTHER:

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