There isn’t a doubt that smartphones just like the iPhone and people utilizing the Android OS, in addition to pill gadgets just like the iPad, have revolutionized the best way shoppers of all ages entry and interface with the Net. Due to gadgets just like the iPhone four and Dash Evo 4G, for instance, shoppers now have the flexibility to work together with each other by means of video conferencing. Essential for enterprise and households alike, video chat is bound to realize in reputation as increasingly gadgets supply this functionality.

With this development, nonetheless, comes a dilemma. Video chat essentially drains bandwidth to work correctly, and continued reliance on out of date 2G, 3G, and fledgling 4G networks just isn’t an ample answer for customers who wish to take full benefit of video conferencing. This is likely one of the causes that Facetime is presently solely allowed over Wi-Fi. To not point out the vast majority of youthful Web customers who more and more demand entry to the Net wherever they might be – whether or not watching streaming video whereas within the ready room on the physician’s workplace, checking NFL scores on whereas in a cab, or updating their Fb standing whereas on line on the grocery retailer.

Some consider that Wi-Fi will step in to resolve the issue. Based on a latest examine by location-based cellular media firm JiWire, for the primary time within the US, the variety of free wi-fi hotspots outnumber paid Wi-Fi areas — with 55.1% of public Wi-Fi areas out there at no cost to customers. This represents a 12.6% improve from Q1 to Q2 2010; Wi-Fi use usually elevated 17.three% in the identical time interval.

Nonetheless, primarily based on the present advert hoc system of free and paid Wi-Fi hotspots round main cities within the US, networks and carriers should try for a greater answer. A sturdy Wi-Fi community is required to offer shoppers and companies with robust, dependable entry to the cellular Net.

Let’s take this chance to dispel some frequent misconceptions about Wi-Fi. First, newer Wi-Fi models in the marketplace have High quality of Service (QOS) in-built for voice and video, and high-performance Wi-Fi models can simply journey 1500 toes in an out of doors surroundings. Secondly, newer Wi-Fi models possess glorious wall penetration traits in an indoor surroundings. Moreover, antenna know-how has additionally come a great distance. MiMo and different Sensible Antenna applied sciences not solely present elevated ranges and penetration of Wi-Fi indicators, but additionally mitigation of the excessive noise ground issues of unlicensed spectrum. Wi-Fi is now able to carrying as much as 200Mbps (the older Wi-Fi began at 11MB, 1 MB lower than Verizon’s new LTE community, in keeping with them). When constructed correctly, a Wi-Fi community will be as dependable as one of the best mobile networks.

Let me be clear, I don’t assume that Wi-Fi is a substitute for the mobile networks, however it’s actually a must have technique of help. The main carriers can now not ignore these extraordinarily quick, cheap Wi-Fi networks and chip units. Nonetheless, Wi-Fi networks able to mobile high quality have to be constructed with QOS, reliability, and enough Backhaul. Just like the community Towerstream is piloting in Manhattan, Wi-Fi networks should enable shoppers to make use of their telephones as telephones – by supporting SMS messages along with calls – and never simply as a hub to entry knowledge. It requires a bit extra capital to assist a service class community that experiences very low latency and might deal with QOS.

These networks should additionally enhance to be able to enable seamless connectivity and hand-off capabilties. For instance, I hate when my iPad continuously prompts me to hitch a Wi-Fi community. That is removed from user-friendly.

One other frequent false impression is that if we have been in a position to magically improve to 4G service tomorrow, all connection points networks are experiencing would disappear. Below the present system, this isn’t possible. As an alternative, offloading knowledge site visitors to Wi-Fi networks is essential merchandise to get individuals off 4G networks and save a few of that spectrum. We consider that Wi-Fi is the quickest and most effective answer to offloading this site visitors, and as Wi-Fi know-how continues to mature, it would undoubtedly have the ability to deal with the numerous improve in bandwidth that’s wanted for an efficient offload.

The quantity of information that subsequent technology networks might want to deal with is one thing that may solely proceed to construct within the coming years as client adoption of smartphones and tablets will increase, and there’s no magic bullet answer. At Towerstream, we consider that 4G just isn’t one commonplace, like Wimax or LTE.  We expect 4G represents a complete community consisting of LTE, WiMAX, WiFi, and Femtocells all working collectively seamlessly as one community with the purpose of offering customers with one of the best connection and repair expertise potential. This can be a purpose that each one networks ought to aspire to fulfill.


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