LONDON,ENGLAND: Independent RF consultant RTT has released the findings of its latest research on trends in mobile-broadband demand. The research shows that a relatively small investment in optimizing wireless-communications user equipment can improve network efficiency and value. RTT believes that this is a prerequisite for industry profitability. The study also forecasts that data traffic will see a thirtyfold increase in volume over the next five years from 3 to 90 Exabytes (a million Terabytes).

Some wireless communications operators are looking to simply increase network density. Using asymmetric-digitalsubscriber- line (ADSL) communications as backhaul via femtocells partly solves the backhaul cost issue. It also can increase local-area-network (LAN) density in a cost-effective way at the subscriber's expense. But femtocells address localarea- access versus wide-area-access economics.

Similarly, multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) antenna approaches achieve high peak data rates in small cells. If MIMO techniques are poorly implemented in user equipment, however, they can compromise single-input single-output (SISO) performance in larger-diameter micro and macro cells.

The study concluded that it is important to address the growing disparity between bench-top measurements and real-life user-equipment performance. This is resulting in best-to-worst differences of 7 dB in user-equipment performance.