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Mobile Broadband Â is the marketing term forÂ wirelessÂ Internet accessÂ through aÂ portable modem,Â mobile phone,Â USBÂ wireless modem, or other mobile devices. Now-a-days Mobile is the Primary Way to access the Internet. The mobile broad band emerged over the past decade not only to extend the range of internet, but it has actually become the primary method of access for people around the world. Mobile Broadband demand is at an all-time high. As of June 2012, there was an estimated 5.63 billion 3GPP subscriptions worldwide. Projections through 2016 indicate an order of magnitude increase in global mobile data traffic. Consequently, this is driving the need for continued innovations in wireless data technologies to provide more capacity and higher quality of service.
By the end of 2010, the utilization of mobile broadband connections is gradually increasing compared to the fixed technologies (see Figure 1). The Forecasts by Infonetics shows that the total mobile broadband subscribers will pass the 6 billion mark in 2012 and approach 7 billion by 2016.
There will be a continuing shift in the percentage of 3G mobile broadband versus 2G connections. Informa Telecoms & Media predicts that by the end of 2017, the global 3G mobile broadband market will include over 5 billion subscriptions, of which 4.7 billion will be 3GPP family technologies with 91 percent share of market (see Figure 2).
II. Mobile Broad Band Devices
About one-third of all handsets sold in 2011 were smartphones, compared with about one-fifth in 2010. Around ten percent of the world's mobile subscriptions use smartphones, so there is room for further uptake. The number of tablets sold worldwide is expected to rise from about 18 million in 2010 to more than 326 million by 2015.
Subscribers are using these connected devices not only to access the internet, but also to access applications and cloud-based services, including video and other bandwidth-intensive content. As a result of these trends, data traffic generated by smartphones is expected to have tripled globally in 2011, and data traffic generated by all mobile devices is projected to have doubled. Currently, the average smartphone user generates approximately 500MB of traffic per month and this number is rising. Overall, mobile data traffic is expected to grow tenfold by 2016.Cisco predicts that by the end of 2012, there will be more Internet connected mobile devices on earth.
The spread of mobile broadband networks, the emergence of new mobile device categories and the expansion of mobile service is establishing an "Internet of things" (IOT). Within the next decade, billions of new devices will be connected to mobile networks, providing consumers and businesses with an array of applications, services and experiences. Products such as game consoles, ATMs and a host of other M2M applications, eBook readers, digital picture frames and connected cameras have already illustrated the possibilities in creating new mobile computing categories for the enterprise and consumer. Yankee Group predicted that a new segment of Connected Devices, including enterprise machine to machine (M2M) connections, tablets and eReaders, will grow to more than 800 million units by 2015.
III. Mobile Broadband Applications
Mobile phone created a new trend in communication media via voice, SMS, IM, or MMS/video. Today's smartphones deliver increasingly rich experiences, including full web browsing and computing capabilities, high-definition video, 3D gaming, access to social networks, and many other compelling services. Mobile is our Best personal device; they are always connected, and are with us always. They offer all-day battery life and, with GPS and other proximity technologies integrated inside it.
In media consumption Mobile stands in first place. According to Yankee Group, half of the iPad owners watch full-length TV episodes, indicating that consumers are no longer limited to watch the clips or music videos on devices Sixty-five percent of users say they prefer mobile because "it's easy to use," 56 percent say that they use mobile most because it's constantly with them, and finally many agree that a mobile device is a more private way to consume information and communicate.
According to the market survey the Informa Telecoms & Media, in 2016 mobile phone users will (on average) consume 6.5 times as much video, over eight times as much music or social media, and nearly 10 times as many games as in 2011.The usage of mobile apps is increasing in huge. The average smartphone has 22 apps and the average feature phone has 10 apps. Every day, 46 million mobile applications are downloaded from Apple's (App Stores).The increase of high-bandwidth apps like videos is creating greater network demands. Users are no longer limited to watch low-resolution, non-bandwidth-intensive videos on their mobile devices. Additionally, large-screen mobile devices are increasing the demand for high-quality mobile video.
Mobile broadband and healthcare: Providing access to information for South African nurses
A pilot project in South Africa demonstrates how smartphones and mobile broadband technologies can be leveraged by nurses to improve access to healthcare within underserved communities.
In South Africa nurses are providing health care to the poorest populations on the infectious diseases by using 3G networks they are sharing their medical cases and clinical knowledge.
The Mobile Health Information System (MHIS) project leveraged 3G wireless technology to enable nurses to provide better care. The MHIS began as a collaborative effort involving the Eastern Cape Department of Health, Port Elizabeth Hospital Complex (PEHC), MTN-South Africa, and the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. The pilot phase provided nurses at PEHC with smartphones that were preloaded with a library of pertinent resources, enabling the nurses to access locally relevant, reliable, and accurate clinical information at the point of care. Nurses integrated the smartphones into their daily activities. They reported using the newly accessible information to update their clinical knowledge, diagnose and treat and provide accurate information to patients, teach students, and share information with colleagues.
B. Transforming Education
Mobile broadband technology also created new trend in education. It also changed the way people learn and share the information. Students are improving their practical knowledge on their technical areas. While they are always connected to mobile devices they are provided to access the resources that are previously not available to students in the developing world.
IV. Mobile Becomes Leading Computing Platform
The global scale and rapid growth of mobile broad-band is driving another important trend within the mobile space, the emergence of mobile computing. Smartphones represent the newest wave of mobile phones and now comprise the largest segment of mo-bile broadband shipments.
In many respects, today's smartphones are more powerful computers than PCs were just a few years ago. The computational power of smartphones has increased exponentially over the past decade. In the early 2000s, mobile phones ran in the tens of MHz in terms of processing power. In 2008, they surpassed 1 GHz (1,000 MHz) for the first time. Solutions on the near horizon will support dual and quad-core processors with clock cycles up to 2.5 GHz more powerful than many notebooks in use today. Merging the best of both the computing and mobile worlds, advanced smartphones and tablets represent a new, highly personalized, rich computing experience that we take with us wherever we go (see Figure 3).
V. Focus on Mobile Broadband
Technology companies previously associated with PCs and fixed Internet experiences-such as Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google-are now focused heavily on mobile. A few points help illustrate the strength of this focus:
â€¢ Smartphones and tablets are driving two-thirds of semiconductor industry revenue growth through 2013, according to Gartner.
â€¢ According to Facebook, more than 250 million people actively use Facebook through mobile devices and are twice as active on Facebook as non-mobile users.
â€¢ Google reported that mobile access of Google Maps was higher than desktop usage for the first time.
VI. Delivering Quality User Experience End-To-End
Mobile broadband traffic has exceeded voice and is continuing to grow rapidly. By 2014, the average subscriber will consume about 1GB of data per month compared with today's average figures that are around some hundred MB per month. Users are aware of the connection speed, data rate, coverage and availability of their mobile broadband services. To ensure that subscribers remain satisfied, operators must deliver a consistent, high-quality and seamless mobile broadband experience that meets or exceeds their expectations. As Figure 4 shows, achieving subscriber satisfaction will require improved data performance overall and at cell edges, especially indoors where about 70 percent of today's data traffic is generated.
Figure 4: A combined approach to delivering a consistent user experience. This method is summarized by (1) Improve: better overall cell-site performance; (2) Density: enhances cell-edge data rates; and (3) Add: increase indoor data rates.
Although macro cells have been proven to be cost effective for most scenarios, but meeting the demand for mobile broadband is now increasingly challenging in certain scenarios such as:
â€¢ Large outdoor hotspots, such as town squares and commercial streets with high traffic demand and already dense macro network areas where interference is high.
â€¢ Isolated indoor hotspots, such as hotels, shopping malls, airports and subway stations, where mobility demands and interferences are high.
In each of these scenarios, heterogeneous networks in which small cells complement macro cells can help meet the growing demand for mobile broadband.
VII. Heterogeneous Network Support
Heterogeneous networks (HetNets) are an attractive means of expanding mobile network capacity. A heterogeneous network (HetNet) is typically composed of multiple radio access technologies, architectures, transmission solutions, and base stations of varying transmission power.
Heterogeneous networks can be characterized by deployments where small cells are placed as an underlay throughout a macrocell deployment. These small cells include micro, pico, Remote Radio Heads (RRH), relay and femto nodes. Due to their lower transmit power and smaller physical size, small cells can reduce site acquisition requirements and installation cost (Figure 5). Small cells can be flexibly deployed in semi-planned or unplanned manner in areas where capacity is needed. Therefore, heterogeneous networks offer a cost-effective and scalable approach for capacity growth by improving spectral efficiency per unit area.
Figure 5: Heterogeneous Network
The most challenging aspect in the deployment of heterogeneous networks is the interference issues generated by sharing the carrier with the overlaid macro nodes, when operators have limited spectrum for LTE deployment.
The interference from macrocell signals to control channel and data channel transmissions of small cells may severely diminish the capability to offload traffic from macrocells. Therefore, it is desirable to balance the load between macro and small cells by allowing expansion of the coverage of low power nodes and subsequently increase cell splitting gains. This concept is referred to as range expansion, which is illustrated in Figure 6
Figure 6: Heterogeneous Network Small Cell Range Expansion
To support larger bias towards small cells, LTE Rel-10 defines almost blank subframes (ABS) by which macro base station can reserve some subframes for small cells. The macro only transmits CRS and PSS/SSS/PBCH signals in an ABS to enable full backward compatibility with legacy UEs, and does not transmit other traffic or control data. As a result, Rel-10 UEs in the range expansion areas of small cells can be served by small cells in ABS subframes. Rel-10 has defined the messages over X2 interface that macro and small cells can exchange over backhaul for ABS allocation coordination. An example ABS allocation is illustrated in Figure 7.
Figure 7: ABS Subframe Partitioning (50 percent-50 percent) between Macro and Small Cells
In addition, the time-domain resource partitioning can be adaptively changed for better load balancing based on number of users and traffic loading in macro and small cells.
In a heterogeneous network, the coordination between macro cells and small cells has a positive impact on the performance and consequently on the overall user experience.
Coordinated embedded small cells improve performance through frequency reuse, increasing both network data capacity and throughput without the need to split the available spectrum. The highest coordination gain is achieved when using a dedicated high-bandwidth, low-latency link among several radios provided by the same baseband.
Figure 8: Cell selection in a heterogeneous network.
Coordination between the macro and small cells enables close cooperation on cell selection especially
in areas where the macro signal is strongest in downlink and the received uplink signal is strongest in the small cell the area indicated by the dotted line in Figure 8.
In this imbalance area, the downlink signal from the macro is strongest because it transmits at a higher power, whereas the uplink signal from the pico node is much stronger because it is closer. In this situation, coordination between the macro and pico cells for features like joint transmission and reception, such as soft handover in WCDMA, provides the user with significantly higher speeds.
VIII. Heterogeneous Networks Enhancements
It is expected that LTE small cells and heterogeneous networks will play an increasingly more important role in the future to meet the growing traffic demands. There are a few areas related to LTE small cells
A. Local Access Enhancements
It is expected that a large portion of the data will be around office, home, and other hot-spots. How to exploit this traffic characteristic in system design will be one of the focused areas. For example, hyper-dense deployment of a large number of low power nodes (picos, femtos, or relays) can be deployed around these traffic-concentrated areas to pick up most of the localized traffic, while macro nodes provide wide-area coverage and capacity.
Adaptive Network Topology
Unlike macro deployment, where the network is well planned and each macro cell provides coverage for a large area, deployment of low power nodes is likely more ad-hoc in nature and each individual low power node typically has smaller foot-print. How to cope with traffic mobility (for example, during office hours versus during night hours) in such deployments is a new challenge. One possible solution is to adapt the network topology based on the location of data demand. For example, instead of turning on all the low power nodes, only those nodes with traffic are turned on (such as nodes around offices during working hours and nodes around residential areas during the night). Such an opportunistic node on/off deployment also helps to reduce inter-cell interference as well as lower power consumption. It can also be realized as adaptive time allocation between downlink (DL) and uplink (UL) based on the DL/UL traffic loads.
Small cell discovery
Opportunistic on/off deployment of low power nodes requires efficient ways to discover these small cells and turn them on/off.
Wireless Backhaul For Small Cells
One challenge for hyper-dense heterogeneous networks is the availability of backhaul to these small cells. A possible solution is to use relay nodes, where relays are self-backhauled via wireless link towards other cells.
Utilization Of High Frequency Spectrum For Local Access
The propagation characteristic of high frequency bands (for example, 3.5GHz) makes them perfect for local access deployment.
Indoor Small Cells
As the number of small cells increases and the size of the cell equipment shrinks, it becomes desirable to deploy the cells in indoor locations where power and backhaul are more readily available. To derive maximum value from indoor small cells, it is desirable if indoor cells can serve both indoor and outdoor UEs. As part of work on small cells in 3GPP, impact of indoor small cells should be developed to study the benefits of such deployments, and the design appropriate solutions relevant in such deployments.
The various radio base station solutions used in a heterogeneous network deployment should not be limited by the backhaul solution, if possible. The level of coordination that can be achieved affects the level of spectrum efficiency, which in turn determines the quality of the user experience. To increase the level of coordination and create a high performing radio-access network, the backhaul link needs to be fast, with low latency and low latency-variation characteristics.
In many parts of the world, mobile broadband offers the first-ever means of accessing the Internet. Mobile broadband not only allows people to connect to one other, but it also provides unprecedented access to highly personalized Internet and computing experiences.
Mobile-broadband traffic is increasing. In parallel, new applications are raising expectations for higher data rates in UL and DL. Creating a heterogeneous network by introducing low power nodes is an attractive approach to meeting traffic demands and performance expectations, particularly in situations where traffic is concentrated - in hotspots, or areas that cannot be suitably covered by the macro layer. By combining low power nodes with an improved and densified macro layer, very high traffic volumes and data rates can be supported. The nature of the existing network, as well as technical and economic considerations, will dictate which approach improving the macro layer; densifying the macro layer; or adding pico nodes - or combination of approaches best meets volume and data-rate targets.
Wireless Intelligence database, February 2012, available at http:// www.wirelessintelligence.com/analysis/.
Cisco. 2011. Cisco Visual Networking Index: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2010-2015. February 2011. http://www.cisco.com/en/US/solutions/collateral/ns341/ns525/ns537/ ns705/ns827/white_paper_c11-520862.html
Gartner. 2011a. Market Share: Mobile Communication Devices by Region and Country, 3Q11. November 14. Available at http://www. gartner.com/id=1847315.
Ericsson, Fourth Quarter Report, January 2012,
Ericsson, Self-Organizing Networks, white paper, February 2012,http://www.ericsson.com/res/docs/whitepapers/WP-Self-Organizing-Networks.pdf
4G Mobile Broadband Evolution-Rel 10 Rel 11 and Beyond October 2012
4G Americas White Paper New_Wireless_Broadband_Applications_and_Devices May 2012
Qualcomm Wireless Reachâ„¢. Project: Education: United States.http://www.qualcomm.com/citizenship/wireless-reach/ projects/education.
Ms.G.Jyothi is currently working as an Assistant Professor, in Department of Information Technology, in SARADA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY & SCIENCES, Khammam, A.P, India. She has received her M.C.A from Kaktiya University, Warangal and Pursuing M.Tech (CSE) from JNTUH, Hyderabad, A.P., INDIA. Her research interests include Software Engineering, Data Mining, Computer Networks, Network security, and Database Management Systems. She had 6 years of Teaching Experience.
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Mrs.V.V.RohiniDevi is currently working as an Assistant Professor, in Department of Computer Science & Engineering, in SARADA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY & SCIENCES, Khammam, A.P, India. She has received her M.Tech (SE) from JNTUH, Hyderabad, A.P., INDIA. Her research interests include Software Engineering, Data Mining, Computer Networks, and Computer Organization. She had 4 years of Teaching Experience.