SingTel today announced that its mobile customers can enjoy up to 20% faster internet access in crowded locations as it implements a range of network capacity enhancements.
The enhancements, which include the Self Organising Networks (SON) solution and small cells technology, are being progressively rolled-out in crowded areas such as shopping malls, event and concert venues, and selected commercial and residential buildings.
SON is a highly advanced network management solution that dynamically allocates network resources to cater to real-time customer demand and usage patterns. When it detects areas of network congestion, it immediately re-assigns data handling capacity from neighboring under-utilized cells.
This not only ensures that customers continue to enjoy optimal network performance, it also minimizes the impact of equipment failure. SingTel claims that it is the first mobile operator in Singapore to implement SON across its entire network.
The telco will also be deploying small cells technology to provide high-speed mobile coverage in locations such as basements and underground car parks, where it is impossible to install conventional base stations and radio network equipment. The deployment of small cells technology will also benefit small and medium enterprise customers as mobile coverage and capacity are enhanced in their office.
Mr Tay Yeow Lian, SingTel’s Vice President of Mobile Core Engineering, said: “We believe our customers will feel a real difference when the new enhancements are in place. They will enjoy up to 20 per cent faster internet access in crowded places that are prone to network congestion. The chances of encountering a dropped call at these packed locations will also be reduced by as much as 40 per cent.”
The small cells technology is seen as an ideal solution to boost network capacity when there are ad-hoc surges in demand at events such as concerts, election rallies, trade shows and exhibitions.
Earlier this year, SingTel announced that it spent S$150 million on the nationwide roll-out of its 4G LTE network. In addition, it was also deploying Multiple-Input-Multiple-Output (MIMO) technology in commercial buildings to boost maximum user download speeds from 75Mbps to 150Mbps.
StarHub announced in June that it was embarking on a multi-million dollar capital expenditure that will go towards mobile network enhancements. These enhancements include the installation of higher-capacity 4G and 3G base stations, enhancing the traffic handling capacity of its transmission backbone, and exploring large-scale small cell deployment to enhance coverage and capacity.
M1 appointed Alcatel-Lucent to deploy a Small Cell (Femtocell) solution to further enhance its 3G radio coverage and capacity in indoor premises. The network improvement work is valued at between S$5 million and S$20 million, depending on the extent of the deployment.
We recently conducted a year-end review of the 4G LTE networks in Singapore. Head over to our article here to find out more.