Towards the Hyper-Dense Network: The shape of the HetNet 2013-2019
Capital spending on the radio access network will see only a small year-on-year increase this year, but there will be an increase of almost 10% in 2015. This will not be driven primarily by conventional equipment, though the rise in volume roll-outs of LTE worldwide will be an important factor. Instead, there will be a significant shift in operator budgets towards new HetNet platforms, driven by advanced software, virtualization and new access points.
This will see a very different, and fragmented, pattern of RAN investment emerging in the next five years, as forecast in detail by the latest biannual report from Maravedis-Rethink’s RAN Service, entitled Towards the hyper-dense network – the shape of the HetNet 2013-2019. Although first-wave LTE networks have generally followed familiar patterns, focusing on coverage and low frequency bands, operators are making detailed plans to add capacity and density using a mixture of tools including small cells, carrier WiFi and new macro antenna technologies.