The reasoning behind Corning’s purchase of SpiderCloud Wireless, which was announced in late July, echoes a trend throughout the wireless industry as it tries to solve the puzzle of providing wireless in the enterprise space.
“The solution needs to be cost effective, enable for multiple operators, create opportunities for new business models for cost sharing and you gotta have a signal source,” said Mike Collado, director, applications marketing – wireless. He believes that is just what will result from the combination of Corning One and SpiderCloud Wireless.
Corning began working with SpiderCloud a couple of years ago looking to evolve in-building wireless beyond the choice of either a multi-operator DAS or single-carrier small cells.
“We saw networks evolving toward a combination end-to-end solution of a centralized base band with flexible distribution to the edge,” Bill Cune, vice president, commercial technology wireless, said.
The purchase of SpiderCloud is the latest step in the in-building wireless space for Corning, which got its start in DAS by purchasing MobileAccess, a hybrid fiber/coax DAS OEM, in 2011. Two years later, Corning Optical Network Evolution (ONE) wireless platform was developed, which pushed fiber-optics out to the antenna and enabled convergence of DAS with WiFi and small cell backhaul.
Formed in Palo Alto, California in 2008, SpiderCloud Wireless provided self-organizing (SON) small cell networks for enterprises and it was an approved radio access network (RAN) vendor for several carriers, but it was single-operator system.
“SpiderCloud brings to Corning its expertise in LTE baseband and small cell, and Corning brings its capabilities in multi-operator active at the antenna networking to the table,” Cune said.
Along with all the wireless carriers, the Corning ONE infrastructure can converge building automation, security and Wi-Fi, among other networks.
Corning brings its extensive experience and channels developed while selling optical fiber and DAS to enterprises. “Most of SpiderCloud’s selling activities have targeted the carriers,” Cune said. “The top three verticals for Corning ONE are commercial real estate, hospitality and sports entertainment/large venue. Close behind is the healthcare market.”
To maximize the benefits of Corning’s market access, SpiderCloud will be integrated into the Corning Optical Communications business.
Late in July, Corning Incorporated acquired SpiderCloud Wireless, a provider of in-building wireless solutions. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. SpiderCloud will become part of the Corning Optical Communications, which plans to grow annual sales from $3 billion in 2016 to $5 billion in 2020, partially through acquisitions.
SpiderCloud, based in Milpitas, California, develops scalable small-cell network platforms that deliver coverage and capacity for wireless services inside buildings to optimize network efficiency and improve user experience.
Clark S. Kinlin, executive vice president, Corning Optical Communications, said, “With the acquisition of SpiderCloud Wireless, we believe our combined product solutions will help drive optical convergence and enable the advantages of fiber-deep architectures within the Enterprise Local Area Network.”
August 26, 2015 –Driven by increasing small cell deployments, the U.S. market for mobile cloud services will increase from almost $6 billion in 2014 to $12 billion in 2019 and will total $52.13 billion during the five-year period, according to a study produced by iGR and sponsored SpiderCloud Wireless, Cisco and Intel.
The firm also forecast that revenue from the adoption of services — such as mobile device management, unified communications, and mobile and PBX integration — will increase to more than $4 billion in 2019 from $91 million in 2015, a total of $7.2 billion during that period.
The study, entitled “The Potential for Small Cells Infrastructure-as-a-Service in the U.S.,” showed that IT managers in medium and large enterprises have a high level of awareness of enterprise small cells and a high degree of interest in deploying them to improve in-building cellular voice and data coverage and capacity, as well as upgrading Wi-Fi to a higher capacity standard such as 802.11ac.
“Building owners, not just their tenants, are increasingly aware that excellent indoor LTE coverage and capacity can be a major selling point,” the report said.
Enterprises demand a small cell solution that is, first and foremost, secure but is also easy to deploy with minimal capital expense upfront. The small cells must be neutral host to serve the communications needs of all employees and visitors.
“This may also include a future option where the mobile operator only provides access to their spectrum and the enterprise takes responsibility for providing the necessary network equipment and interface to the operator’s core network,” the report said.
While IT personnel prefer keeping managed services in-house, the study found strong interest in using small cells to provide connectivity to a host of managed services and functions, including context/location services, Wi-Fi as a service, policy services, firewall services, web filtering, mobile and PBX integration, mobile device management and unified communications.
“There is solid interest in having a small cell managed service, as more than 30 percent of IT managers in all company sizes indicated high levels of interest,” the report said.
January 14, 2015 — Overall 2014 was an exciting time in the wireless world. Mobile innovations brought us the early days of wearable devices and the beginnings of the connected home. Apple and Samsung continued to push the size limits of mobile devices. Mobile consolidation efforts continued with Softbank and Sprint and T-Mobile USA brought us low-low pricing battles. 2015 has the earmarks for more monumental shifts in the mobile landscape.
In the new year, expect more focus on Network Function Virtualization (NFV) in enterprise and mobile networks, edge and cloud services and Software Defined Networking (SDN) to drive network transformation as the industry moves from capex to opex. Big Data will grow as enterprise IT vendors and mobile carriers alike leverage data analysis for localization content, context and services for advertising and brand loyalty. There will be continued focus on data security for data centers services, as well as in the enterprise and at home. Mobile network evolution from to LTE and beyond continues, especially as wearables and the growth of the “Internet of Things” make the case for improved use of higher spectrum for last mile access to enhance our quest for an “Always-on” experience.
Here are a few key predictions for the wireless market:
Mobile macro networks will see OpEx spend match CapEx spend by years end.
Network infrastructure spending is expected to be flat, but thanks to the rise of cloud services over the last few years, 2015 will mark the year that OpEx overtakes CapEx and never looks back. Even Deutsche Bank is eyeing this trend, as both carrier and enterprise IT is looking to cloud, SaaS, subscriptions and service contracts will make up the majority of spending in the year ahead.
Expect small cells and software to dominate network build out to handle need for mobile capacity.
Flat macro-cellular spending means the shift is going to be on small cell build-outs and services rather than the traditional macro-focused infrastructure spending we’ve seen in the past. Carriers will be looking for ways to enhance coverage in high-density areas using small cell networks. Expect to see in-building coverage and capacity to be the new battleground for mobile carriers by years end.
BYOD and DIY mobile in the enterprise is properly diagnosed.
Businesses realize that BYOD is a misdiagnosis of a larger problem when trying to solve in-building mobility issues and security concerns. Originally trumpeted as a smart fiscal move, CIOs and CFOs begin to realize that without the relationships and economies of scale, enterprises begin to see its employees are treated like regular consumers and this is a disadvantage to the enterprise. CIOs realize that corporate IT are security savvy, but not mobility experts and lean on mobile operators to fix mobility problems. For enterprises, Corporate Owned, Personally Enabled (COPE) devices with secure application containers becomes the preferred methods to deal with mobility, security and cost-containment by corporate IT, CIOs and professionals alike.
Connected Devices, Peripherals and Smart Buildings become a strong trend in the Enterprise.
The expected increase in wearable and connected devices, due in part by significantly lower prices as companies fight for adoption, will add a significant strain on the already-strained enterprise Wi-Fi networks, creating opportunities for 3G/4G in-building mobility solutions and services from mobile operators and computing partners. Within the next 2 years, wireless and mobile traffic demands inside the enterprise will double. This will mean IT departments will need help to better cope with dynamic capacity demands while focusing on security. Simply banning non-essential devices is not a move that works as early adopters always find work-around methods. Rather, the savvy enterprise IT team will look for ways to prioritize application usage or and cloud-source a large majority of network functions.
Expect network vendor consolidation in unexpected places.
Expect fixed-mobile consolidation to continue. Look for Nokia to expand by acquiring a core routing company, Amdocs to expand beyond software and billing services by acquiring a mobile hardware company, and finally we will see Oracle’s new management take the further into mobile by buying a hardware company.
The Silicon Valley big surprise in 2015? A Space Odyssey.
Google acquires a space company to compete with SpaceX and Virgin Galactic for space travel and exploration. Will passengers receive complimentary Google Glass devices?
Beyond 2015: Gigabit Consumption becomes the norm.
One hundred-Gigabit mobile family usage plans and Ethernet-to-the-home to become the norm. By end of 2015, individual usage will start to reach 2 Gb on average and 3-5 Gb for the top 10%. By 2018, when you hear 100 Gig plans pricing plans, you won’t blink an eye.
Ethernet-to-the-home (ETTH) will be favored over fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) in major metropolitan areas.
ETTH not only addressed the growing bandwidth demands of the consumer, but it better favors business deployments making it a more cost-effective may to bring a big pipe to over 75% of highly populated areas. This broad coverage translates to around 10% of all deployment areas giving carriers a one-two punch on both consumer and enterprise deployments.
Beyond 2015: Consumers and businesses drive demand for soft-SIM IP phones.
Apple SIM is just the tip of the iceberg for both consumer and business mobile customers looking for flexibility in selecting mobile service provider based on best service, costs, location (city or country) or handset. Carriers and OEMs that successfully meet the demands of the customer will succeed the most, but this also provides opportunities for innovative developers looking to work into the telecom marketplace.
Beyond 2015: 5G is defined by service level by 2018.
Unlike the previous mobile telephony generations that were defined by technology, 5G officially is defined by service levels. Expect 5G to not be about the airlink or access method, speed or spectrum, rather it will be about service level and quality of service.
Ronny Haraldsvik is SVP/CMO of SpiderCloud Wireless and an industry veteran for more than 25 years.
September 24, 2014 — OEMs, such as SpiderCloud, believe that Network Function Virtualization (NFV) can offer significant advantages in running applications locally in carrier-driven small-cell deployments in the enterprise within the virtualized environment. Edge clouds, as SpiderCloud calls them, are small cells linked by their controller to the mobile core. Such networks can link to the core and run applications such as security, analytics, content filtering and content delivery. This can significantly improve overall network performance and optimize loading and network dynamics.
NFV virtualizes network functions previously carried out by dedicated hardware. Its focus is to consolidate many network equipment types onto industry-standard, high-volume servers, switches and storage. This model works in well with the cloud philosophy of placing hardware in one central location and virtualizing the hard points of the network.
Virtualization is the next generation of wireless networks, offering lower cost, higher efficiency and increased network agility.
Ernest Worthman is the editor of AGL Small Cell Magazine