Release Five: The challenge and benefits of small cell deployment in Rural & Remote areas

Small cells are gaining strong traction in areas once considered too challenging to address. As the case studies paper in our Release Four content makes clear, small cells are not just economically and technically feasible in the urban context but a competitive necessity that is already inspiring real world rollouts.

And now the economic argument is going much further. A mobile operator may have invested in a mobile payment system but it’s only useful if you use it in all locations.

If maritime, mining, oil and gas, emergency, disaster recovery and private network solutions can all make use of small cells appropriately configured, enabled and backhauled, a chance to use tools they know and understand from mobile networks would surely be welcomed by workers. In both cases there is a competitive advantage for an operator that can demonstrate the usefulness and ubiquity of its brand in all contexts – even rural and remote.

These are far from the only relevant uses of small cells in remote and rural contexts. And, as they are addressed by some operators, they will become a competitive necessity for all of them. But they need the technology, the business case and the markets to make them work. So how should operators and vendors respond to these challenges?

Well, many of them already are. Work is already moving ahead on Small Cell Forum Release Five – a release that takes on the challenge of bringing not just small cells but backhaul, apps, new approaches to caching and network architecture and much more to small cells in a rural and remote context. And your ideas and involvement will make them a reality.

You’ve already helped to make urban small cells into one of the major markets of the mobile future. Once end users see mobile broadband coverage as a norm rather than good fortune on a city street, they will expect the same outside a village shop in rural Germany. We’d like you to help us to meet their expectations.

Take a look at our presentation from Julius Robson outlining the scope of Release Five here: http://www.slideshare.net/SmallCellForum1/small-cell-forum-release-five-rural-remote

Get in touch to find out how you can get involved: info@smallcelforum.org