June 4, 2019

Reimagine Cellular Connectivity: Cellular Backhaul

Reimagine Cellular Connectivity: Cellular Backhaul

Growth Surge Coming to the Cell Backhaul Market

Mobile network operators have been extending network coverage to the remote corners of the globe, generating new revenue in under-served areas. Satellite backhaul has been a key solution to achieving this goal. As a result, we now expect mobile coverage everywhere, even in an isolated mountain town or on a remote island. And the addressable market is far from saturation.

In many underdeveloped parts of the world, smartphones are often the only internet access technology that’s both affordable and available. Considering that 4 billion people remained offline in 2017, there is still an incredible amount of room for mobile demand to grow.

That’s the good news. But here’s the challenge: the popularity of bandwidth-heavy applications, especially video, is reshaping what mobile traffic looks like. As mobile networks in remote and rural areas shift to 4G, and eventually 5G network, they need advanced technology to compress video and heavy data. This introduces new challenges to transmit cellular traffic seamlessly and transparently over a satellite network.

Further, an increased mix of voice, data and video traffic requires more complex Service Level Agreements (SLAs) and a need for sophisticated Quality of Service (QoS) bandwidth management. These issues impact the end-user experience and require bandwidth management and efficiency solutions to satisfy more demanding applications.

Fortunately, satellite network solutions are ready for the journey ahead, thanks to reductions in capacity pricing, new advances in ground segment technology and lower-cost access networks. VSAT solutions featuring DVB-S2X and high-speed Adaptive Time Division Multiple Access (ATDMA) are now considered a competitive technology to fiber and microwave for efficiently backhauling 4G/LTE traffic. Plus, High Throughput Satellites (HTS) now offer greatly increased capacity compared with previous generations of satellite technology.

The iDirect Cellular Backhaul Solution

iDirect’s cellular backhaul solution is designed to take full advantage of HTS, and our iQ series remotes can easily expand via software-defined capabilities to add new throughput capabilities and features as the growing network requires. Our cellular backhaul solution lets service provider substantially reduce bandwidth costs, enabling mobile network operators to rapidly and cost-effectively expand their services.

The iDirect cellular backhaul solution can scale with increasing throughput and run large networks and a multitude of QoS settings seamlessly to maintain the most complex (SLAs) so that service providers can operate at the cost levels required by mobile operators who are under constant pressure to deliver OPEX savings and ARPU increases.

The iDirect SatHaul-XE™ Optimization Suite is an advanced set of tools focused on traffic acceleration, optimization, security and compression for intelligent and efficient delivery of 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE traffic optimized over the links and integrated back to the core network.

Our cellular backhaul solution is compatible with all major cellular infrastructure solutions and standards-based technologies, which enables mobile operators to expand their networks, integrate more seamlessly and offer unique services to an ever-growing and more demanding customer base.

Getting more value from satellite connectivity

These satellite and ground system innovations will drive a new wave of backhaul growth for satellite operators and service providers. NSR forecasts that 4G satellite capacity demand will skyrocket in the next 10 years with solid growth across all steps of the value chain. Further, NSR predicts cellular backhaul revenues will grow at 20 percent through 2027, driven by key opportunities like replacing legacy 2G stations with high-end 4G- capable modems and adding close to 87,000 high-value cellular backhaul sites.

To make the mobile future a reality everywhere in the world, cellular and satellite must continue to work together. In fact, the growth of mobile networks also presents new use cases

for satellite service providers to expand their offerings. Reimagine how satellite connectivity can support a mobile network. Just as satellite can stretch connectivity to rural or remote areas, it can provide alternative routing for when primary terrestrial or wireless communication links go down, are wiped out, or when they are overloaded with traffic.

Cellular backhaul is no longer solving one problem but enabling multiple solutions for operators. By working together, satellite and mobile operators can use cellular backhaul connectivity to build the seamless, always-connected future the world demands.

Stay tuned to this series for more insights on how satellite and cellular can work together to support emerging connectivity needs.

Don’t miss iDirect at GVF Cellular Backhaul World

See Savyon Wasser, Director Vertical Market Solutions, Product Management on 13 June at 11:30 – 13:15 presenting on “The Mobile Ecosystem…. Satellite 5G Use Cases” in the GVF event co-located with 5G World (11-13 June).