Nortel stretches CDMA

At the CTIA Wireless 2005 conference this week, Nortel Networks said it plans to offer CDMA2000 1xEV-DO Revision A (DO Rev A) technology to allow CDMA network operators to provide more feature-rich services, such as VOIP and high-speed file transfers.

DO Rev A will also support virtual real-time interactive access to services such as push-to-talk, mobile television, and video telephony, Nortel says.

DO Rev A delivers peak data rate bursts up to 3.1M bit/sec on the forward link and up to 1.8M bit/sec on the reverse link. DO Rev A operates in the 1.25-MHz channel and is optimized for packet data service.

EV-DO, meanwhile, supports data rates up to 2.4M bit/sec.

Nortel is planning live market trials with Verizon Wireless Services beginning in 2006.

DO Rev A has been approved by the 3GPP2 Technical Specification Group.

Nortel also announced at CTIA Wireless 2005 enhancements to its wireless packet voice core product portfolio for GSM and UMTS operators designed to reduce operating costs and increase network efficiency, while improving voice quality for subscribers.

Nortel's packet voice core technology builds on the next generation of 3GPP Release 4 (R4) standards. R4 makes use of call servers and media gateways that separate the call control software and the physical ports carrying the voice calls.

The enhancements include a packet voice gateway card that provides switching and routing for voice channels as well as support for special functions such as lawful intercept, conference calling, tones and announcements. They also include IP-based signaling for GSM and UMTS operators to be able to transport the signaling traffic over an IP network based on 3GPP standards. This functionality will reduce the footprint requirement by two-thirds for signaling equipment and reduce the backhaul cost for signaling traffic, Nortel says.

Another enhancement is voice compression, which will reduce the bandwidth requirement by almost 75 percent for traffic between media gateways on the packet backbone, Nortel says. Nortel's media gateway also supports integrated echo cancellation and voice quality processing features to ensure that wireless packet voice quality is as good as, or better than, traditional TDM voice service quality, the company says.

Nortel is currently deploying R4 technology in several markets across Cingular's national GSM network.

Separately, Nortel rival Lucent Technologies announced at CTIA Wireless 2005 that it has equipped nearly 10,000 base stations to support EV-DO. Lucent, citing market research data published by Dell'Oro Group, says EV-DO subscribers will make up nearly 50 percent of all CDMA users globally within the next three years.

Lucent says it currently has nine commercial EV-DO customers.

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