NSN Unveils Liquid Radio

Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) has unveiled a new architecture for mobile networks that is able to direct mobile broadband capacity to where it’s needed most. The architecture, dubbed ‘Liquid Radio’, enables a more economic use of network resources through sharing and redistributing capacity based on user demand, according to the firm. The technology was launched at the CTIA Wireless 2011 show in Orlando, Florida, and the company says it expects to start deploying the architecture during 2011.

As part of the Liquid Radio announcement, NSN showed its Flexi Multiradio Antenna System, which is part of the Liquid Radio system. The antenna allows for ‘beamforming’ – the act of focusing a particular radio connection and directing it to a specific user. Together with other layers of coverage provided by macro, pico and microsite configurations, beamforming allows capacity to be directed where the user requires it, delivering up to 65 per cent capacity gain, according to the company.

Thorsten Robrecht, NSN’s head of network systems product management, says: “Liquids are unconstrained, streaming to fill any gap or space. In the same way, our Liquid Radio architecture removes the constraints of traditional mobile broadband networks to address the ebb and flow of traffic created by users’ movements across the network.”

Robrecht also predicts a massive rise in demand for network capacity in the future. “We foresee demand for network capacity increasing to up to 1GB per user per day,” he says. “Not only will this require substantial network investments, but also, a unique combination of base station sites for wide area coverage, complemented by wi-fi and small, compact micro, pico and femtocells. Nokia Siemens Networks Liquid Radio ensures that existing network investments are fully leveraged and that future investments deliver the return necessary to support today’s pressing challenge of maintaining and transitioning GSM, evolving 3G and introducing LTE and LTE-Advanced.”