Mobile communications sets its sights on interference

23rd August 2016
Posted By : Anna Flockett
Mobile communications sets its sights on interference

The availability of InterferenceAdvisor, an automated interference hunting solution which can dramatically reduce the amount of time it takes to locate mobile network interference sources has been announced by Viavi Solutions. What typically could take several days or weeks can now take just hours.

As mobile communications proliferate, increasingly crowded airwaves lead to radio signal interference that adversely affects customer experience, and trying to identify interference sources is like finding a needle in a haystack. Technology evolution, including network densification and the IoT, will exponentially grow the number of network connections, further exacerbating the problem. Viavi developed InterferenceAdvisor to enable mobile network operators to anticipate and respond to these challenges, helping to optimise customer experience while managing cost.

InterferenceAdvisor, a fully automated interference location solution with directions and navigation, offers one of the lowest Total Costs of Ownership (TCO) among leading competitors. It features a light-weight, portable Omni antenna; an automated interference area indication and navigation guide; voice prompts to direct the cell technician to the suspected interference location; full spectrum control; and display for detailed interference signal monitoring, all managed from a Wi-Fi enabled Android tablet. It also includes built-in accessories to minimise the cabling requirement.

“As networks become denser, interference will increase,” commented Monica Paolini, President and Founder, Senza Fili Consulting. “Densification is fundamental for service providers to support traffic loads in high-density locations such as shopping centres, transport hubs and other public areas. In many cases, service providers use small cells and Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS) that share spectrum channels with macro cells. In these environments, interference may negatively impact the customer experience unless operators move to mitigate interference aggressively.”

InterferenceAdvisor is easy to set up and allows one engineer to quickly and easily locate interference sources, even in an urban environment. The limited resource requirement, reduced time, and minimal training all contribute to the low TCO.

“By our estimates, seventy-one per cent of mobile network operators now have a regular problem with interference,” said Kevin Oliver, Viavi’s Vice President and General Manager, Converged Instruments and Virtual Test. “Mobile users near the interference source experience degraded call success rates, increased dropped calls, decreased battery life, poor voice quality, and reduced data throughput. We’re pleased to offer the industry a cost-effective, easy-to-use solution for detecting, locating, and eliminating these sources of RF interference.”

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