Qualcomm & Alcatel Ready Multimode Small Cells

Qualcomm, which announced a partnership with Alcatel-Lucent last July, will sell a multimode small cell that combines AlcaLu’s lightRadio radio access network (RAN) with Qualcomm’s small cell chips by mid-year, reports Light Reading.

The two companies hope to develop small cells with enhanced wireless network reception in environments such as urban areas, shopping malls and other enterprise venues.

Multimode small cells (Wi-Fi/Cellular) in the enterprise, is where AlcaLu’s first devices are headed, according to Mike Schabel, general manager of Alcatel-Lucent’s small cell group.

“Our first product will be available by the middle of the year,” he told Light Reading recently.

Schabel says that all of AlcaLu’s small cells will have WiFi integrated going forward. As of January, the company has 65 contracted, revenue-generating customers in 42 countries.

“WiFi is really mostly on the metro portfolio today and is going to come in the enterprise portfolio as we add the new Qualcomm portfolio mid-year,” Schabel said.

One of the benefits of LTE-Advanced is the Relay Mode, enabling an LTE hot spot to use the same cellular channel for both local access and backhaul (using Time Division Multiplexing).

As many as 11.5 million small-cell base stations could be deployed by 2018, up from just 168,000 today, according to a status report from the Small Cell Forum.

Posted by Sam Churchill on .

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