The telecom industry believes that the worldwide volume of consumer internet traffic could be as much as 300 Exabytes (or 300 billion gigabytes) per month by 20221. As a result, network infrastructure and Communications Service Providers (CSPs) are faced with ever-accelerating deployment rates for network technology and equipment.Network buildouts comprise different types of cells and technologies, one being small cell networks, for both 4G and 5G technologies. In this article we will give an introduction to the AWTI application for better managed deployments and cover some of the challenges present in small cell deployments.
A major component of the new network deployments are small cells. By 2025, small cell deployments and upgrades will reach 10.25 million radios globally2. The telecom industry’s capital investment of $11.5 billion on small cells in 2018, is forecasted to increase almost five times by 2025, to around $52 billion.
In the United States, a study commissioned by industry group CTIA has projected more than 800,000 small cells on air by 20263, up from 86,000 in 2018. It is estimated that Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile currently have between 30,000 and 50,000 small cells each. According to the projections, these numbers will more than double every three years for the next decade.
Small cell deployments face some of the same challenges as macro cells, and there are new challenges specific to small cells caused by the number and diversity of deployments. These challenges include:
Increasing deployment speed and quality requires a substantially different approach than what is used for current network deployments. There needs to be a new methodology that completes as much work as possible in a central, controlled environment, and allows equipment to be deployed into the field that has already been installed and integrated into the network. In this new methodology, the mindset is to simply move the equipment to its permanent location.
This methodology is known as AWTI (Assemble, Wire, Test, and Integration) and increases speed-to-market, overall deployment quality, and reduces costs. The AWTI process as part of an end-to-end deployment management system is shown here:
To learn more about the benefits of AWTI for your small cell deployments contact the KGPCo AWTI team. We are here to share how AWTI solutions can work for you.
1 “Edholm’s Law”: https://spectrum.ieee.org/telecom/wireless/edholms-law-of-bandwidth
2 “Tips and Trends: Small cell 5G Systems”, Qorvo, Jun 2019: https://www.qorvo.com/design-hub/blog/tips-and-trends-small-cell-5g-systems
3 “CTIA: Infrastructure-Key Facts: Towers and Small Cells”: https://www.ctia.org/infrastructure-channel