Posts tagged ‘Canada’

Quick-fire Interview with Manuel Vera, Senior Manager – Network, Bell Mobility

Manuel Vera, Senior Manager – Network (National Network Performance), Bell Mobility

Manuel Vera, Senior Manager – Network (National Network Performance), Bell Mobility

Please tell us about your role?

I am responsible for the introduction of new technology and network performance support.   I also have oversight of network performance trends and analysis.  Lastly, I develop processes to support new technologies as well as evaluate new solutions to better manage network performance.

What changes have you seen in the industry over the last 12 months?

The speed of technology turn over and adoption has changed dramatically.  It has gone from 10 Years, to 5 years, to recently a matter of 1 year. (AMPS -> CDMA -> EVDO -> 3G UMTS -> HSPA -> LTE -> LTE-A)

What are your priorities for the next year ahead?

It comes down to three key areas -small cells. continuing the ‘Speed Game’ (2xCarrier Aggregation, 3xCarrier Aggregation), and delivering connectivity and managing network performance at special events and large venues.

How can industry help overcome your current challenges?

There is a pipeline of technology that will drive network automation – Better SON features – complete dSON deployments and explore cSON systems.

In your opinion, why should medics and industry representatives attend HetNet North America in May 2015?

The event is a good way to learn about the industry and keep track of the latest trends.  I found over the years that in events such as this, we either ratify the direction we are taking or we rectify it based on our key takeaways.

For more information on HetNet North America, visit

Interview: Senior Technical Advisor, Canadian Safety and Security Program: “the real challenge is in ensuring that the public safety community has total confidence that the technology will work.”

Claudio Lucente, Senior Technical Advisor (Contractor), Canadian Safety and Security Program is speaking on Day Two of the LTE North America conference, taking place on the 21st-22nd November 2013, in Dallas, Texas, USA. Ahead of the show we find about about importance of LTE to Canadian Public Safety systems.

Claudio Lucente, Senior Technical Advisor, (Contractor), CSSP

Claudio Lucente, Senior Technical Advisor (Contractor), Canadian Safety and Security Program (CSSP) is speaking on Day Two of the LTE North America conference, taking place on the 21st-22nd November 2013, in Dallas, Texas, USA. Ahead of the show we find about about importance of LTE to Canadian Public Safety systems.

To put things in context please give me some background on the Canadian Safety and Security Program.

The Canadian Safety and Security Program (CSSP) is a federal program led by Defence Research and Development Canada’s Centre for Security Science, in partnership with Public Safety Canada. The program’s mandate is to provide science and technology solutions, support and advice to various issues impacting public safety and security, including chemical, biological, radiological-nuclear and explosives threats, critical infrastructure protection, surveillance, intelligence and interdiction, emergency management systems and interoperability, support to domestic operations and responder safety and operational effectiveness.

The CSSP is providing technical support and advice to the development of a Public Safety Broadband Network (PSBN) in Canada, which is a significant national effort coordinated by Public Safety Canada, involving different policy, governance, and technical issues and many different partners in both the public and private sectors. Through the CSSP, we’ve put in place Technical Working Groups involving approximately 80 participants from all levels of government, industry and academia who are working together to provide technical advice and recommendations on the PSBN initiative. This includes looking at operational, interoperability and security requirements, as well as proposing a preliminary architecture design for the PSBN.

The LTE North America conference is taking place on the 21st-22nd November 2013, in Dallas, Texas, USA. Click here NOW to download a brochure for the event.

The Mysterious Case of the Google Nexus and the Phantom LTE Chip

If there was any proof that what smartphone users really, really want is LTE then the exciting story of the Google Nexus Phone and the Phantom LTE chip should put paid to that.

When Google released its latest smartphone, the Nexus 4, all and sundry were duly shocked and surprised to find that it lacked LTE support. This truly was unexpected, as all recent flagship smartphone releases, such as the Samsung Galaxy SIII and the iPhone 5 have featured LTE support.

Google’s explanation for this, delivered by Android head honcho Andy Rubin, was that it was a ‘tactical issue’, which of course means nothing. He also cited cost and battery life concerns but the most likely suggestion for the omission that I have seen is that if Google included LTE that it would not have had to do deals with the carriers in the US to get onto their network, and that would have prevented it from selling the phone unlocked in its own online store – which would essentially defeat the purpose of having a Google branded phone, and eat into its revenue.

However, it turned out that while LTE was not on the list, it had still gatecrashed the party.

iFixit, a web site that loves its teardowns, where a gadget is taken apart to find out what lurks within, discovered that there was indeed, an LTE chip nestling inside the LG manufactured phone. So why was it not turned on?

This time the explanation had to come from LG, and the quote was:

“In order to provide the best possible specification for Nexus 4, LG utilised the same powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset as can be found in its 4G LTE product, namely LG Optimus G. This powerful chipset is only available with a combined processor and modem and cannot be implemented separately.”

In other words it was cheaper for LG to leave the LTE chip in there than use a different chipset sans LTE.

The reason it could not be activated LG said was the LTE requires a dedicated antenna and filter to operate correctly for each frequency. This is what adds, bulk, cost and complexity to smartphones and one of the reasons why not all bands can be supported.

That seemed to be the end of that, until it turns out that some crafty people had managed to get that LTE chip to do its thing using some software tweaks. Users on the XDA developers forum (or in other words – hackers!) discovered a settings menu that enables them to turn on the LTE- and lo and behold it worked. So is this affordable LTE for everyone? (The Nexus 4 only costs around £250, compared to £600 for an iPhone 5).

Well, not for everyone. The hardware only supports Band 4, which is 2110MHz for the downlink and 1710MHz for the uplink. The only operator that use that is Telus in Canada, which is great for them, but not much use anywhere else. (See missing antenna’s and filters mentioned earlier).

It’s interesting though, as it reveals how politics, control and money can affect how devices and gadgets are implemented. It also demonstrates that ‘old skool’ hackery is alive and well. We are in the ‘post-PC era’ and mobile phones, particularly if they are running Android, are like PCs ‘back in the day’ – intriguing, powerful, and eminently hackable.

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