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Small Cells Networking and Mobile Backhaul - Markets, Technologies and Applications

  • ID: 3754688
  • Report
  • June 2016
  • Region: Global
  • 162 Pages
  • PracTel Inc


  • Ackrion
  • BridgeWave
  • E-band Communications
  • Intracom (Microwave)
  • Peraso
  • Siklu
This particular report updates previous studies and adds the new information. The report presents in detail and in easily understandable terms independent, unbiased analysis, which reflects progress in small cells and their backhauls solutions developments. Through vendors’ interviews and the analysis of other multiple data sources, the report provides latest, accurate marketing and technological information.

In particular, the report provides the analysis of small cells technologies, concentrating on their advantages, varieties and specifics. Major applications are analyzed and the standardizations developments are emphasized. Based on the in-depth industry analysis, which included the analysis of multiple studies and interviews with vendors, market prognoses (2016-2020) are presented. The survey of more than thirty vendors and their portfolios are also provided. It is shown that the 4G era (and later the 5G era) will concentrates on building HetNets in which small cells play an important role.

The report stresses that the small cells backhaul solution may prove or brake the small cell business case. Specifics of small cells backhauls, their varieties and differences from macro cells backhauls are analyzed in details. The need for standardization is emphasized. The study of industry trends, interviews with vendors and the analysis of publically available statistical data helped to perform the marketing analysis. The survey of vendors (about 30 manufacturers of small cells backhaul equipment) reflects this industry specifics. There is a range of use cases for open access small cells, from targeted demand hotspots in city centers, through generalized capacity uplift, to serving not-spots in remote rural areas. In each case the emphasis on backhaul requirements shifts, and aspects that are critical to one type of deployment can be relaxed in others. Solutions with different characteristics will address the needs of different types of small cells backhaul in different areas.

Microwave backhauls for SCs are prevailing now and it is expected that they will keep this leadership position in future.

Attachments contain the in-depth analysis of promising small cell backhaul solutions:

1. 60 GHz technologies (V-band). Both Ethernet radio and 802.11ad solutions are addressed. Marketing and technical specifics are described in details. The survey of vendors is also provided.

2. 802.11ac. The technology allows gigabits throughput, range and other characteristics that satisfy small cell backhaul requirements. Authors analyzed specifics of 802.11ac as they relate to the small cell backhaul application; they also analyzed the market and vendors’ portfolios.

3. E-band radio. Popularity of this radio for discussed applications is growing; and this trend will be even more pronounced when we are approaching the 5G era.

The report is written for a wide audience of telecommunications specialists that deal with complicated choices in mobile networking to support business cases.
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown


  • Ackrion
  • BridgeWave
  • E-band Communications
  • Intracom (Microwave)
  • Peraso
  • Siklu
1.0 Introduction

1.1 General

1.2 Progress

1.3 SC Backhaul

1.4 Scope

1.5 Report Structure

1.6 Research Methodology

1.7 Target Audience

2.0 4G Era

2.1 Traffic Volumes - SCs Help

2.2 Transition

2.3 Typical Features

2.3.1 HetNet

3.0 5G Era

3.1 5G Timetable (3GPP-ITU)

3.2 Look into Tomorrow

3.3 4G-5G Small Cells

4.0 Small Cells Specifics

4.1 SC Developments

4.2 Nomenclature

4.2.1 Group

4.3 Background

4.4 Applications

4.4.1 Indoor Use Cases

4.4.2 Outdoor Use Cases

4.4.3 Public Safety Communications

4.4.4 Summary

4.5 Benefits and Issues

4.6 Small Cell Market

4.6.1 Market Geography

4.6.2 Estimate

4.7 Standardization

4.7.1 Organizations Beginning 3GPP Rel.12 and SCs

4.8 Small Cell Industry

Alcatel-Lucent (Nokia)

AirHop Communications

Airvana (CommScope)

Athena (acquired by Google in 2015)



BTI Wireless













Nokia Siemens Networks




Ruckus Wireless (Brocade)


Spider Cloud




5.0 Small Cell Backhaul

5.1 General

5.1.1 Major Classifications

5.2 Specifics

5.2.1 Change

5.2.2 Differences

5.3 Parameters

5.3.1 Factors

5.3.2 Planning

5.4 Need for Standardization

5.5 Market Characteristics

5.5.1 Components

5.5.2 TCO Factor

5.6 Small Cell Backhaul Industry

Actelis (wireline)

Airspan (integrated wireless backhaul - 802.11ac - NLOS)

Alcatel-Lucent (60 GHz and other)

Bluwan (42 GHz)

BLiNQ (sub - 6 GHz)


Cambridge Broadband (Microwave Backhaul)

CCS (28 GHz and up)

Ceragon (sub-6 GHz and other)

DragonWave (microwave)

Exalt (Microwave)

Intracom (Microwave)

Genesis (wireline)

MAX4G (Microwave)

Polewall (FSO)

Peraso (802.11ad; 60 GHz radio)

Radwin (sub-6 GHz)

Ruckus (802.11n) - Brocade

Tarana (LoS, NLoS 3 GHz)

Taqua (Microwave NLOS)


5.7 Summary

6.0 Conclusions

Attachment A: 60 GHz Radio - SC Backhaul

A.1 General

A.2 60 GHz Radio - Point-to-Point

A.2.1 Spectrum Specifics

A.2.2 Oxygen Absorption

A.2.3 Antenna Focus

A.2.4 Combined Effects

A.2.5 Availability

A.2.6 Progress in Chip Technology for mmWave

A.2.6.1 Modulation and Duplexing

A.1.6.2 Antenna

A. Indoor Behavior

A. Outdoor Behavior - FCC Modifications

A.1.7 Summary

A.1.8 60 GHz Radio Developments and Market

A.1.8.1 Synopsis

A.1.8.2 Market Estimate

A. General

A. Drivers

A. Forecast

A.1.9 60 GHz Radio - SC Backhaul Choice

A.1.10 Industry

Athena (acquired by Google in 2015)








Plasma Antennas



Sub10 Systems (now Fastback)

A.2 60 GHz Wi-Fi - 802.11ad

A.2.1 Advanced Wi-Fi: Benefits and Issues

A.2.2 WiGig Alliance

A.2.2.1 Union

A.2.3 IEEE 802.11ad - 60 GHz Wi-Fi

A.2.3.1 Status

A.2.3.2 Coexistence

A.2.3.3 Scope

A. Channelization



A. Specifics

A. Summary

A. 802.11ad and SC Backhaul

A.2.3.4 Industry





Wilocity (acquired by Qualcomm in 2014)

A.2.3.5 Potential Market

A. Market Drivers

A. Usage Models

A. Estimate

Attachment B: 802.11ac

B.1 Approval

B.2 General - Improving 802.11n Characteristics

B.3 Major Features

B.4 Major Benefits

B.5 Usage Models

B.6 Projections

B.7 Industry


Airspan Networks


Ruckus (Brocade)

Attachment C: E-band Radio - SC Backhaul Solution

C.1 Benefits

C.2 Market

C.3 Vendors



E-band Communications





List of Figures:
Figure 1: Mobile Data Traffic Growth - Global (Petabytes/Month)

Figure 2: ITU-R Schedule for IMT-2020 Development

Figure 3: 3GPP - Tentative Timeline - 5G Standardization

Figure 4: Major Characteristics - 5G

Figure 5: mmWave Advantages

Figure 6: Macro vs Small BS - Shipped (Ratio)

Figure 7: BS Classification

Figure 8: Base Stations Characteristics

Figure 9: Use Cases

Figure 10: Estimate: SC Global Shipments (Mil. Units)

Figure 11: Estimate: Global SC Shipments ($B)

Figure 12: Rel. 12 Enhancements

Figure 13: Scenario 1

Figure 14: Scenario 2

Figure 15: SC Backhaul Illustration

Figure 16: SC Backhaul Types

Figure 17: (a) Non-ideal; and (b) Ideal SC Backhaul Characteristics

Figure 18: Technological Changes

Figure 19: Summary: Specifics of SC Backhauls

Figure 20: Estimate: SC Backhaul - Global Market ($B)

Figure 21: Estimate: Global Market - SC Microwave Backhaul ($B)

Figure 22: PMP (a) and PTP (b) Architectures

Figure 23: 60 GHz Radio Use Cases

Figure 24: Attenuation in 60 GHz Band

Figure 25: Absorption Details

Figure 26: Directivity

Figure 27: Bands Features Comparison - Illustration

Figure 28: 60 GHz Links Characteristics

Figure 29: 60 GHz Link Characteristics

Figure 30: Global Market - SC Backhaul - 60 GHz Radio ($B)

Figure 31: 60 GHz SC Backhaul Characteristics

Figure 32: 802.11ad Major Features

Figure 33: 802.11ad PHY - Modulation

Figure 34: 802.11ad MAC

Figure 35: Summary

Figure 36: 60 GHz Wi-Fi Usage Models

Figure 37: PM: Tri-band Wi-Fi Chipsets Sales - Global (Bil. Units)

Figure 38: PM: Global Sales Tri-band Wi-Fi Chipsets ($B)

Figure 39: Functionalities

Figure 40: Channel Assignment: 802.11ac

Figure 41: Rates: 802.11ac

Figure 42: Channel Size/Rate

Figure 43: Usage Models

Figure 44: 802.11ac Consumers AP Shipping (Mil. Units)

Figure 45: Illustration - E-band Radio - Backhauling Mobile Network

Figure 46: Regulations

Figure 47: Estimate: Global Market-SC Backhaul-E-band Radio ($B)
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
- Ackrion

- Actelis (wireline)

- AirHop Communications

- Airspan Networks

- Airvana (CommScope)

- Alcatel-Lucent (Nokia)

- Athena (acquired by Google in 2015)

- Aviat

- Baicells

- BLiNQ (sub - 6 GHz)

- Bluwan (42 GHz)

- BridgeWave

- Broadcom

- BTI Wireless

- Cambium

- Cambridge Broadband (Microwave Backhaul)

- Cavium

- CCS (28 GHz and up)

- Ceragon

- Cisco

- Contela

- DragonWave

- E-band Communications

- Ericsson

- Exalt (Microwave)

- Fujitsu

- Genesis (wireline)

- Gilat

- Huawei

- Infineon

- Intel

- InterDigital-BlueWireless

- Intracom (Microwave)

- ip.access

- Juni

- Lightpointe

- MAX4G (Microwave)

- Maxim

- Mimosa


- Nitero

- Nokia Siemens Networks

- Peraso (802.11ad; 60 GHz radio)

- Peraso

- Plasma Antennas

- Polewall (FSO)

- Qualcomm

- Quortus

- Radisys

- Radwin (sub-6 GHz)

- Ruckus Wireless (Brocade)

- Samsung


- Siklu

- Solectek

- Spider Cloud

- Sub10 Systems (now Fastback)

- Taqua (Microwave NLOS)

- Tarana (LoS, NLoS 3 GHz)

- Tektelic

- Tensorcom

- TI (NLoS)

- Wilocity
- Xilinx

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown

Considerable research was done using the Internet. Information from various Web sites was studied and analyzed; evaluation of publicly available marketing and technical publications was conducted.

Telephone conversations and interviews were held with industry analysts, technical experts and executives. In addition to these interviews and primary research, secondary sources were used to develop a more complete mosaic of the market landscape, including industry and trade publications, conferences and seminars.

The overriding objective throughout the work has been to provide valid and relevant information. This has led to a continual review and update of the information content.