First live active antenna deployment will be in London for 2012 Olympics
Operators must design networks that can profitably support traffic demand of a gigabyte per user per day by 2020, CEO Rajeev Suri told media and analysts on the eve of Mobile World Congress.
Suri, who recently presided over a radical realignment of the company’s operating structure by sending several business units and a targeted 17,000 staff heading for the exit, said that the company was now well-placed to meet the changing needs of mobile operators. Those needs include meeting a demand for wireless data that NSN believes will reach one gigabyte per user per day – across WiFi and cellular networks.
“We’re fully funded to execute our business plan,” he added, obliquely addressing persistent rumours that the company is eventually headed for a sale. He did state that he thought that five NEPs was “one too many”, but was keen to give the impression that NSN’s new focus meant it was now ahead of its competition in aligning to new market conditions. The company wants to position itself as the industry’s dedicated mobile broadband specialist.
That said, the company now makes half of its money from managed services, Suri confirmed, with contracts to manage 180 networks, 170 of which are multi-vendor networks. Half of the elements that Nokia Siemens manages are not NSN elements, he said.
Not that the company has stopped innovating in networks. The run-up to MWC saw it make announcements in HSPA+, enabling cell sharing, in core SON, and in a host of small cell solutions, including baseband pooling for clusters of small cells, and a managed “soup-to-nuts” in-building service.
Operators liked the new focus of the company, he said, and NSN is now confident of reaching a firm second place status in LTE by revenue share. NSN was winning the bulk of its LTE business in developed markets, he said, giving good margin and high revenues. The company is approaching a “clean sweep” in Japan for LTE, he added.
Indeed, Mobile Europe has seen documents that suggest that the next operator to announce an FDD LTE launch in Japan will be SoftBank, with NSN as its vendor partner. Look out for that announcement this week, or very soon after.
As well as its turning away from the “End to end solutions provider” approach, the company’s Liquid Net vision, its core network intelligence and lead in customer analytics and intelligence differentiate it from other competitors, he said.
It is that integrated broadband management vision that meant the company recently over-turned an Ericsson 3G contract with one un-named operator in the UK, he said. The new contract means that the Olympics in London 2012 will see the first live deployment of NSN’s active antenna technology, Suri added.