Mobile operators have been advised to shift from device-minded mindset to network thinking so they can deliver across-the-home network infrastructure delivering higher speed to their customers.
That’s the message from Sebastian Richter, Director of Product Creation at devolo AG, experts in high-performance home networking solutions, at Broadband World Forum (BBWF) held in Berlin.
“Thanks to the rise in streaming services and connected applications, operators have come to realise that a complete, end-to-end solution is essential to prevent downtime when lots of apps and services are in use. However, with the network having to consist of several devices across the home to ensure coverage, operators should free customers from constant maintenance of the connections,” he says.
“Thanks to the rise in streaming services and connected applications, operators have come to realise that a complete, end-to-end solution is essential to prevent downtime when lots of apps and services are in use.
Sebastian Richter, Director of Product Creation at devolo AG
Richter reckons that the foundation for a reliable home network is formed by several devices – or access points – providing Wi-Fi and LAN connections right where they are needed. Acting as a backbone for Wi-Fi, powerline communications (PLC) has proven to be both reliable and future-proof.
“Two thirds of Wi-Fi signal can often be lost through brick or concrete, significantly reducing the performance for users. With more than 50% of the EU’s population living in detached or row houses, this causes a serious lack of availability,” Richter says.
According to him, “by using PLC as the backbone technology, the signal does not get blocked by ceilings or walls, giving users the best possible in-home experience. Also, using PLC as the backbone helps save valuable Wi-Fi spectrum which is crucial as the need for additional bandwidth further increases, driven by data-hungry services and applications.”
devolo which claims to have shipped over 37 million of its PLC products and offering the 7th generation of Wi-Fi products since 2007, recently announced its new devolo Magic series, which will be the first in Europe to use second-generation G.hn chips, which can offer speeds of up to 2,400 Mpbs.“Customers shouldn’t have to struggle with the set-up, security and troubleshooting issues of numerous devices. They should simply be able to rely on the network to function on its own. Using the devolo offering, this is made a reality,” he explains.
Richter says the devolo Magic acts as a range extender that brings the signal to any room over the electrical wiring. It simply requires plugging in one adapter at the router and a second at the location where internet connection is lacking, allowing end-users to experience reliable and interference-free Smart Wi-Fi throughout the home. Compared to sole Wi-Fi networking, the highly versatile adapters offer a much better price-performance-ratio and are built to ensure the signal is not impeded by walls or reinforced concrete ceilings. Moreover, with devolo, operators benefit from enhanced statistics via TR-069, providing them with valuable information about the performance of the home network.
A further benefit to having several devices installed throughout the home means not only secure and stable coverage can be achieved but maintenance issues can also be flagged up easily, he adds.
Richter puts forward an alternative from being device-oriented and propose a network-centric viewpoint. This mindset is based on a network that is gaining more and more intelligence and will evolve into a self-organising network (SON) with the ability to set-up, manage, maintain, and eventually even heal or defend itself.
“Operators have a huge weight on their shoulders – the future of the home network. With new technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality soon making their way into the living room, customers need ease of installation. If operators incorporate a SON approach, they can offer users a new kind of multimedia experience throughout the home. We thought about home networking before anybody else did, offering PLC and then later down the line PLC plus Wi-Fi. Our expertise in this field is demonstrated with the millions of devices we have shipped worldwide as well as our many years in this industry – we know the problems both customers and operators are facing today,” Richter says.