SAMENA proposes use of L-band for SDL in MENA
L-Band needed to keep up with demand for mobile broadband
The SAMENA Telecommunications Council has proposed that regulators pursue all necessary efforts in making the 1452-1492 MHz band available for SDL in timely manner to allow the mobile network operators to offer mobile broadband services in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
The proposal is intended to help manage a year-on-year increase of up to three times in the data traffic over mobile broadband networks seen in some countries in the MENA region between 2012 and 2013. The rise is marked by a particular evolution towards asymmetrical traffic due to mobile multimedia usage leading to an increasing demand for downlink capacity, said SAMENA.
According to Plum Consulting, the downlink traffic is growing very quickly due to more and more intensive mobile multimedia usages and the ratio measured on some live mobile networks can reach a 10:1 downlink/uplink ratio.
In order to address the traffic asymmetry, Europe has decided to harmonise the 1452-1492 MHz (L-band) for Supplemental Downlink (SDL). L-band SDL will help to increase the capacity of mobile broadband networks by aggregating the 1452-1492 MHz band in the downlink with other IMT FDD bands (800, 900, 1800 or 2100 MHz for example) using HSPA+ and LTE standards.
"The ecosystem for Supplemental Downlink (SDL) in 1452-1492MHz (L-band) has matured with the development of the appropriate regulatory framework, the technical standardisation and the expected availability of commercial equipment by 2015. Therefore, SAMENA supports the harmonisation and the use of the L-band for SDL in the Middle East and North Africa," said Bocar Ba, CEO at SAMENA Telecommunications Council.
"This approach is of particular relevance for MENA countries where downlink data traffic is booming and where the harmonisation and use of L-band SDL can generate substantial economic and social benefits reaching $26bn, as elaborated in a report by Plum Consulting," he added.