Outdoor Mobile Capacity

With the mobile revolution still moving forward at full speed, the demand for robust wireless connectivity is growing rapidly. Mobile network operators, more than anyone, are under pressure to meet expectant users’ needs, and doing so isn’t always straightforward.

Demand for robust wireless connectivity is growing rapidly

Demand for robust wireless connectivity is growing rapidly

Data consumption is rising in most parts of the UK as connected devices and their apps move from 3G to 4G, and even towards 5G, but it’s in densely populated cities like London where demand is at its highest. Coverage is less of an issue here than it is in more rural areas, but with so many people trying to connect via the same macro sites, network capacity often falls short.

This is where our Hosted Location service comes in handy.

How Arqiva is helping

Our Hosted Location service is an extension of the macro network projects we’ve been involved in for decades. It includes the street-based deployment of Small Cell technology, which allows network operators to enhance their outdoor capacity in built-up areas where erecting full-size masts just isn’t feasible.

Instead of requiring their own dedicated telecom towers, Small Cells are installed on existing street furniture such as lighting columns, the sides of buildings and roadside cabinets. This means the technology is providing mobile signal where it’s needed most: among the swarms of mobile users going about their busy, connectivity-fuelled days. As a neutral host, we have the ability to make these site assets easily accessible to all network operators. We do this effectively by acting as a one-stop shop.

The best technology for the job – now and in the future

As the UK’s largest neutral host provider, we have no bias towards any operator, vendor or technology – we’re simply focused on delivering the best solution for the task in hand. In situations where Small Cells might not be the most effective option we’re ready to explore and deploy the alternatives, such as a Distributed Antenna System (DAS).

As these technologies and society’s needs evolve, so too will our approach to delivering robust connectivity. We’re already preparing for developments like 5G, connected cars and the wider Internet of Things (IoT), all of which will create new challenges around outdoor capacity.

We continue to explore new ways of overcoming backhaul challenges, for example. By using both wireless and fixed ‘dark fibre’ networks to link our city-based technologies where necessary, we’re able to keep processes simple, lower costs and deployment times down for network operators, while also readying ourselves and our partners for the future.

Arqiva in the connectivity ecosystem

With decades of experience in telecommunications and wireless connectivity, and the largest portfolio of street furniture assets in the UK, there’s no doubt that Arqiva is best placed to help mobile network operators, the government and local authorities meet their outdoor capacity objectives.

It’s not something we do alone, however.

Arqiva sits at the centre of a powerful ecosystem comprising of network operators, landlords, local authorities, surveyors, installers, asset providers, backhaul specialists and design service providers among many others. We all have a part to play in ensuring mobile capacity in towns and cities across the UK meets the growing demand, as well as opportunities to benefit.

We already have close working relationships with the UK’s biggest network operators, including O2 and EE, but to continue delivering outdoor mobile capacity and robust connectivity where it is needed most, we must continue to form partnerships with organisations and people like those listed above.

If you think you have something to offer, whether it’s a useful service or valuable street assets, let’s talk.