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foggyhaze

Interesting report. The data rates don't seem that much better than those already available with HSPA. Did you come away with a feel for how the two technologies compare in the real world? Also, any idea how many users were connected simultaneously?

Stefan Constantinescu

so i bet you have the know how to tell us why WiMAX is or is not better than LTE, but can someone explain the politics (spectrum auctions and what not) behind why one may have more potential than the other?

Martin

Hi Stefan,

I think this is not a question of which technology is better but rather the type of mobile operator. UMTS incumbents are likely to go for LTE and possibly HSPA+ first since it fits nicely with their infrastructure they already have in place. Some CDMA operators like Verizon seem to be on the same bath. An exception to the rule seems to be Sprint with their preference for WiMAX in order to be first on the market with something beyond EvDO. Otherwise, in my humble opinion, WiMAX will be mostly used by new operators entering the market trying to break into wireless with new business models.

So the success of WiMAX will depend on how many emerging new operators can be attracted to the market and how well WiMAX fares in emerging economies.

Cheers,
Martin

Martin

Hi there,

in typical HSPA networks today you can see data rates of around 2.5 MBit/s. Even with new mobiles, it hardly ever exceeds 3 MBit/s. In this WiMAX network we could easily go beyond 6 or 7 MBit/s, something I haven't seen in HSPA network yet. And it wasn't even 2x2 MIMO yet. Concerning users per cell I would say only very few, it was a demo network after all.

Cheers,
Martin

foggyhaze

And to be really fair, spectrum usage: typical HSPA 2x5MHz, WiMAX here 3x10MHz. Is that correct? Neither MIMO, yet. But TDD WiMAX has the edge for up/down flexibility me thinks. Is that important? Depends on how the market develops.

Martin

Hi,

yes, in the demo network they were using a different carrier in each sector. With HSPA you use the same carrier in each sector and thus have more interference. You are correct, TDD up/down flexibility is better since you can adjust the time spent for uplink and downlink.

I've blogged about that before:

http://mobilesociety.typepad.com/mobile_life/2007/12/tdd-ul-and-dl-r.html

Cheers,
Martin

foggyhaze

But TDD is more problematic when it comes to real network deployment as adjacent channel interference becomes more complicated due to mixed up/down usage. That's when sync'ing becomes relevant and you lose some flexibility. Will this become a new 'HDPA vs BluMAX' battle or will handsets become totally flexible (with associated inefficiencies)? Competition is good but can lead to some compromise in performance.

Martin

Synching base stations is also good to increase performance with fractional frequency reuse:

http://mobilesociety.typepad.com/mobile_life/2007/02/deep_inside_the_2.html

Cheers,
Martin

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