Nokia Siemens HSPA+ Multiflow lets one device connect to two cell sites simultaneously

If you've ever used a cell phone while moving, then you've probably experienced the depressed network connectivity that becomes more of an issue as you move further away from any given tower. Some of us are even unfortunate enough to reside or work right at the edge of a cell, forced to live with poor connectivity for much of every day. A new feature called HSPA+ Multiflow may offer some relief, "delivering double the data speed and up to 50 percent faster response compared to existing HSPA+ networks," according to Nokia Siemens, which will be demonstrating the technology at Mobile World Congress later this month. Essentially, Multiflow allows compatible devices on the edge of a cell to connect to two sites simultaneously, letting your device send and receive data between two base stations at once. Multiflow will be available as a software update for Single RAN systems, so it could make its way to a cell site near you just after Nokia Siemens flips the switch during the second half of 2013. Full PR is just past the break.

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Nokia Siemens Networks delivers faster, more flexible 4G (HSPA+)

Presents first ever demo of HSPA+ Multiflow on commercial infrastructure equipment, delivering up to double the cell edge data speed

Operators will be able to offer enhanced mobile broadband with a new feature for HSPA+ networks from Nokia Siemens Networks and Qualcomm*. Known as HSPA+ Multiflow, it allows devices located close to the edge of a mobile base station's cell to connect with a second base station serving a neighboring cell. The 'Multiflow' name refers to the two different paths data can then take to reach a device. The feature makes far more efficient use of network resources, delivering up to double the data speed and up to 50% faster response compared to existing HSPA+ networks.

A live demonstration** at Mobile World Congress 2012 of the feature will be based on Nokia Siemens Networks' commercial Single RAN offering and Qualcomm's prototype USB dongles.

"With 100 million smart devices being added every month, we see a consequent increase in 'smart' applications that make use of their advanced capabilities. Not only is network traffic rising dramatically, much of it is also unpredictable in nature, and this can impact user experience," said Keith Sutton, head of the WCDMA business line for Nokia Siemens Networks. "This is where HSPA+ Multiflow helps operators – it reduces imbalances that typically occur in network resource usage, and increases HSPA+ speed and capacity."

HSPA+ Multiflow enables simultaneous transmission of two data streams from base stations in two adjacent cells to a single user device instead of one data stream from one base station as is the case with HSPA+*** today. Overall, this can up to double throughput (data speeds) for users at cell edge. Due to Nokia Siemens Networks' highly scalable Single RAN equipment, operators can protect their earlier network investments, by evolving their existing HSPA networks to the new technology with a simple software upgrade.

"We are working with Nokia Siemens Networks to drive the evolution and deployment of technologies like HSPA+," said Serge Willenegger, vice president of product management at Qualcomm. "This demonstration confirms that HSPA+ Multiflow will enable us to further enhance the HSPA+ mobile broadband user experience, and is thus a valuable contribution toward enhancing the HSPA+ value proposition and further expanding global mobile broadband coverage."

The HSPA+ Multiflow feature is expected to be 3GPP standardized**** by mid 2012, and will be available commercially from Nokia Siemens Networks by second half of 2013.

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