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  • Nokia's Moiin Believes Massive MIMO/Interference Cancellation is Ready to Come Out of the Labs

    ArtemisVerizon and Nokia are ready to test. Nokia CTO Hossein Moiin intends to test Antonio Forenza's pCell technology early next year. Last year, I wrote extremely skeptically about Artemis/pCell informed by three very respected engineers. CEO Steve Perlman made wildly implausible claims, including that they would deploy across 350 San Francisco rooftops by the end of last year. They haven't been seen.

    Moiin is a respected, independent engineer. I have to look again. USC Prof Giuseppe Caire now says "The early trials showed pCell achieving far higher concurrent user capacity than any wireless technology I am aware of." That's very different from his earlier comments (below) and I assume he's been shown something newer. Peter White at Faultline has an important article about semi-secret trials in U.S. sports stadiums. (Paywall.) 

    Verizon in a startling move Monday told analysts they would soon test Massive MIMO and beamforming. (pCell is very similar.) These are key "5G" tools that weren't expected until about 2020. 

  • Verizon 5G: Doubling capacity in 6 months with 800 MHz of spectrum

    Verizon's Bill Stone tells Mike Dano at Fierce, "Verizon will essentially double its 5G Home channel configurations from 400 MHz to 800 MHz, and that the speeds and capacity available through the service would double as a result." With 400 MHz, many Verizon customers are getting close to a gigabit today. The doubled capacity can be deployed in many ways.

    Speeds could be doubled from "300 to 1,000 megabits." Verizon could raise the top speed to 2 gigabits for consumers to outpace U.S. cablecos, now mostly at 1 gigabit. (Some cablecos are starting to offer 1.5 gigabits.) Very, very few consumers can make effective use of even a gigabit, but the evidence around the world is that customers buy speed even if they don't use it. 

    Raising the 300 megabit minimum to 600 megabits would be a welcome move. Ex-CEO Lowell McAdam said the Verizon 5G would be targeted at a gigabit for all. I was shocked when VZ instead said 300-1,000 on launch.  My initial thought was they were just covering their rear on problem cases, but then Vestberg said some customers would not get mmWave but something slower. 


    The additional capacity can be tuned to raise speeds, serve more customers, deliver better service to businesses, or extend reach. I suspect the decisions haven't been made yet and marketing will play a large role.  



  • Verizon Ready to Try Massive MIMO and Beamforming

    massive mimo linkopingsHoping for 2017 although almost no one expected this before 2020 and "5G." CEO Lowell McAdams told analysts Verizon plans  "Staying ~two years ahead of competitors in network performance."  Massive MIMO and beamforming deliver "Huge gains in spectral efficiency." Delivered wireless can increase two to ten times over the next few years using arrays of thirty-five to hundreds of antennas. A 10x jump wouldn't surprise any of the researchers. Pulling that far ahead is probably an impossible dream. AT&T has almost caught up with Verizon. 

    Until this week, almost everyone thought substantial Massive MIMO deployment unlikely until 2020 and 5G. The excellent Bernstein analyst Paul de Sa was the first to report "VZ will soon begin market trials of 5G capabilities including 'massive MIMO' (which is when a large number of antennas are packed into a single device) and beam forming (which is when a wireless signal is concentrated on a specific location)." I confirmed with a second analyst what was said.

    Beginning trials soon would suggest deployment in 2017 if they go well.