There’s a lot of talk about LTE (News - Alert) these days, particularly when it comes to mobile communications. We all hear it and see it in ads, but what exactly is LTE and why should we care so much about it and what is its impact on mobility?
LTE stands for Long Term Evolution and it represents the next step in 4G communications. LTE provides significantly increased peak data rates, with the potential for 100 Mbps downstream and 30 Mbps upstream, reduced latency, scalable bandwidth capacity, and backwards compatibility with existing GSM and UMTS technology.
Now that we’ve gotten the LTE 101 out of the way, let’s look at LTE’s impact on future technologies, particularly how it will foster further development of services and applications.
LTE networks offer the promise of supporting the explosion in traffic arising from a new generation of mobile devices and applications. The introduction of LTE has several implications on the transport network.
Alcatel-Lucent (News - Alert), a provider of mobile, fixed, IP and optics technologies offers an end-to-end solution when migrating to all IP LTE. Alcatel-Lucent designs and tests the end-to-end LTE/ SAE-compliant network solution, and provides migration and operational processes in GSM, WCDMA, CDMA and TD-SCDMA environments.
By introducing LTE, service providers can offer higher capacity at lower cost, multiservice transport and low latency with a higher quality of service as discussed in an Alcatel-Lucent white paper, LTE Mobile Transport Evolution. Also with LTE, there is an increased connectivity and load sharing, and, as a result, traffic does not have to flow through a hub site.
The end-to-end all IP LTE network fully interworks with third-party LTE devices and is optimized for all-IP triple-play service delivery, and interworks with existing wireless and wireline infrastructures.
But what about transport?
There is increasing demand for a variety of new Internet services with different and stringent quality of service requirements. For example, there’s Internet telephony, videoconferencing, video and mobile Internet traffic. These require the design of mechanisms to support QoS guarantees.
Alcatel-Lucent’s Converged Backbone Transformation (CBT) offers a new method to managing the increased demand for greater bandwidth and the solution is a crucial factor of their High Leverage Network (HLN).
According to Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs (News - Alert), video is expected to be 70 percent of Internet traffic by 2014 and mobile traffic will grow 30 times by 2015.
Service providers need to relieve the strain on their core networks while improving return on investment (ROI).
By offering an all-IP LTE network, service providers can deliver better mobile broadband experiences. The service aware all-IP LTE network offers a high QoS and trusted Web experience by delivering dynamic policy management, IP service routing and service management capabilities.
Service providers can shift themselves within the wireless value chain, optimizing user-paid data revenue, and expand to capture new sources of revenue from content and application providers.
Service providers who are employing mobile packet transport based on the Alcatel-Lucent Mobile Backhaul solution can leverage the same packet transport network for LTE. Managed service providers will then have a clear evolution path to LTE, allowing the coexistence of LTE with previous generations of mobile technologies through cost-effective, converged transport.
By having these new capabilities, service providers can offer better mobile broadband services at reduced cost per megabit for a sustainable, profitable business model.
Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO West 2011, taking place Sept. 13-15, 2011, in Austin, Texas. ITEXPO (News - Alert) offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. To register, click here.
Michelle Amodio is a TMCnet contributor. She has helped promote companies and groups in all industries, from technology to banking to professional roller derby. She holds a bachelor's degree in Writing from Endicott College and currently works in marketing, journalism, and public relations as a freelancer.
Edited by John Lahtinen