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RAD introduces a suite of cellular backhaul products to facilitate migration to an all-IP radio access network

RAD Data Communications Ltd : 31 May, 2007  (New Product)
RAD Data Communications will unveil a suite of cellular backhaul products designed to lower the cost of running 2G, 3G and 3.5G voice and data traffic over packet-based networks. These devices have demonstrated convincingly in pre-launch trials their ability to efficiently separate HSDPA traffic to run over DSL circuits and also to deliver TDM-based and ATM-based (UMTS REL. 99) services robustly with highly accurate clock distribution and recovery across an asynchronous Ethernet network by applying pseudowire emulation technology adhering to stringent timing standards.
Backhaul Bandwidth to Soar'The rollout of mobile broadband networks and new services based on UMTS, such as HSDPA and HSUPA, is forecasted to generate an exponential growth in demand for cellular backhaul bandwidth,' explains Gaby Junowicz, Director of Business Development at RAD Data Communications. 'HSDPA, for example, promises to deliver up to 14.4 Mbps peak service throughput per each mobile subscriber. Analysts predict that as a result of this soaring demand for bandwidth, cellular operators spending on backhaul links will double in 2009,' says Junowicz. 'At the same time, however, mobile operators expect their average revenue per user to plunge in the coming years as they compete against fixed line operators for the same user base.'

According to Junowicz, 'the biggest challenge facing mobile operators is handling capacity growth across the network. Buying four or eight E1/T1 lines is not scalable or cost-effective for backhaul when a 10 Mbps Ethernet connection goes for a fraction of the cost of leased circuits, and bandwidth can be added incrementally with relative ease over a variety of media, including WiMAX, cable and PONs.'

Hybrid Approach to HSDPAA recent report published by Infonetics Research shows that while the migration to IP-based backhaul is clearly underway, it will be a gradual process, because TDM mobile backhaul provisioning is a multi-billion dollar business that carriers wonít give up readily. Carriers also need time to gain trust with the new IP/Ethernet equipment. 'For this reason,' proposes Junowicz, 'mobile operators will adopt a hybrid approach in which legacy voice and real-time traffic like video will be carried over existing leased lines or deterministic networks while HSDPA will be transported over affordable Ethernet-based connections.' Nevertheless, he says, 'the pressure to reduce Opex in the backhaul will eventually sway mobile operators to migrate to packet-based transport networks while standards activities and traffic engineering will provide them with the necessary comfort level.'

Fixed Mobile ConvergenceCost-cutting aside, the biggest boon to shifting to a packet network for cellular backhaul transport is that it is suitable for fixed-mobile convergence. 'Broadband customers today want the same user experience whether they are in front of their IPTV at home or downloading to their mobile handset on the road,' continues Junowicz. 'Since the underlying technology behind this is IP, mobile operators and service providers will be able to assure seamless transport by using the same packet-switched infrastructure for mobile and wireline business and residential services.'

New Products at 3GSM World CongressRADís suite of cellular backhaul products being introduced at 3GSM World include the ACE-3600 multiservice aggregation unit, supporting pseudowire transport of ATM over packet-based networks, the LA-130 cell-site gateway for delivering HSDPA over xDSL, the Gmux-2000 carrier-class compressed voice trunking gateway, and the Vmux-420 A-bis/A-ter optimization gateway.

'What all of these different devices have in common,' explains Junowicz, 'is their ability to optimize cellular backhaul bandwidth from 2G, 3G and 3.5G cell sites and, using pseudowire emulation technology, hand it off to an Ethernet, MPLS or IP transport network, thus enabling the migration to an all-IP radio access infrastructure.'

'For better or worse, RAD will not be alone in this marketplace,' acknowledges Junowicz. 'Independent research confirms that this trend will sweep the mobile backhaul environment in the next few years, with one report predicting that 99% of all IP mobile backhaul equipment will be pseudowire-enabled by 2009.'
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