Newsletter Volume 3, Issue 4

At this time of year it's common to reflect on accomplishments. It has been a very strong year for ComputaMaps. We added 103 cities to our 3D library and now count over 260 cities around the globe. We launched Urban Planner 2.5D with new enhanced clutter for our telecom customers and introduced the DxM product line to address other vertical markets. Our R&D investment continues and we look forward to new product announcements in 2013 as a result of these efforts.


In this edition of our newsletter, we focus on a topic closely related to LTE and 3G in dense urban markets: the value of 3D data in small-cell planning. As urban areas are the focus of initial LTE deployments, utilizing HETNET deployment strategies including microcells with coverage footprints of only 50m, there is a strong case to be made for 3D data. Read the article.


Our annual customer survey will be arriving in your inbox in January. Please look for it and take five minutes to provide us with your feedback. As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and welcome your feedback.


Small-cell Planning:
The Role of 3D Geodata

 

With the data demand created by smartphone usage, wireless operators deploying advanced 3G and 4G networks in urban areas are utilizing more small cells to delivery capacity and reduce interference. According to Informa Media and Telecoms, by this quarter their number globally will surpass macrocells. The analyst firm further predicts 91 million small cells will be in the market by the end of 2016. Determining the proper location for small cells in urban locations is a tricky business and a case where having the right geodata for the job makes a big difference.


Traditionally, RF planning was accomplished using 2D geodata with a high reliance on clutter classes, and in particular assigning distinct RF parameters per class. The resolution of geodata employed was typically 25-30m. This approach worked well where macro sites could propagate from 3-30 km. However, this approach is does not work effectively in dense urban environments where small cells provide an effective solution for capacity, coverage holes and spectrum-constrained markets.


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Image 1 - The above 2D coverage map in a dense urban area based on 25m resolution data is wildly over optimistic given the analysis does not include building data. What is the impact of this type of site design? A poorly dimensioned network that has coverage holes, interference issues and weak performance.


The inefficiency of using 2D data to simulate urban environments is well known to engineers. To compensate for this deficiency, many operators rely on the knowledge of experienced planning engineers and site-specific drive-test measurements. Utilizing drive tests works better, but it's very expensive to perform them frequently with the density required for small-cell deployments. It's also not practical to perform in-building measurements over a large city-wide area.


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Image 2 - Drive-test measurements indicate RF coverage on the road and outside. As can be seen on the plot above, lack of accurate building contours means in-building coverage problems may be left unaddressed.


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Image 3 - Using 3D data, in this case including building polygons at 2m resolution, makes the coverage of the network much clearer. Note the outdoor small cells located to target indoor coverage holes.



Image 4 - The accuracy of 3D high-resolution data lets engineers fix most of the in-building problems using inexpensive small cells placed outside the buildings, avoiding costly and slow-to-deploy indoor DAS installations.


Many engineers that consider RF simulation as a crude calculation compared with measurements achieved through drive tests have not used high-resolution geodata in conjunction with today's advanced propagation models. With these highly detailed simulations the precise location of the best placements of small cells is possible when geolocated network traffic and its performance are known. A major objective for small-cell deployment is not only ad-hoc coverage improvement, but also equally important macro network offload. A high accuracy, multidimensional small-cell design provides improved macro-network performance, higher customer satisfaction and reduces churn.


Utilizing tried-and-tested processes, as well as urban propagation models and accurate 3D geodata provides engineers with the best opportunity for a successful 4G network design. For the simulation to be meaningful the geodata utilized must be high resolution (typically under five meters) and it must include building polygons so that urban canyoning effects (e.g., diffraction, reflection) can be accurately reproduced. By overlaying high-resolution traffic/drops over the detailed predictions, engineers can prioritize the small-cell locations and get the best possible return on investment. In fact, an investment in 3D data is quickly offset against equipment and optimization costs as the result of a poor initial plan. Contact us today to learn how ComputaMaps 3D data can help solve your urban network planning efforts.


Special thanks to ComputaMaps partner MobileAllies for the coverage plots. See their optimization service offering using high-resolution data at mobileallies.com

News & Events


Mobile World Congress

 

We are busy planning for Mobile World Congress 2013. With the event being held at a new conference hall for the first time in many years, the Expo Grand Via, it will seem like a whole new show for us. We'll be in Hall 6, Stand 6B91. If you will be in Barcelona for the world's largest telecom tradeshow, please contact us to arrange for meetings and local hospitality.


New map view on Computamaps.com

 

We've updated the mapping system on our website used for showing our 3D city availability. We're happy with the result and the usability. We'd love to hear what you think.


Recent Projects

3D Projects

Brazil

Goiânia
Rio de Janeiro

Goiânia, Brazil

Canada

Calgary, AB

Calgary, AB, Canada

Chile

Concepción
Las Condes
Ñuñoa
San Miguel
Viña del Mar

Las Condes, Chile

San Miguel, Chile

Dominican Republic

Santiago
Santo Domingo

France

Bordeaux
Paris

Italy

Milan

Singapore

Singapore

Thailand

Bangkok

United Kingdom

London

USA

Salt Lake City, UT
San Jose, CA

Salt Lake City, UT, USA

San Jose, CA, USA

2D projects

Argentina

Córdoba

Australia

Bundaberg
Cairns
Gladstone
Maryborough
Rockhampton
Toowoomba
Townsville
Yeppoon

Brazil

Abaete
Aracaju
Araxa
Arcos
Bambui
Bauru
Bom Despacho
Camaçari
Campo Belo
Carmo do Cajuru
Claudio
Coromandel
Divinopolis
Estado de São Paulo
Formiga
Franca
Ibia
Itapecerica
Itatiba
Itauna
Lagoa da Prata
Minas Gerais
Monte Carmelo
Natal
Novo Gama
Oliveira
Paranaguá
Passos
Patrocinio
Perdizes
Piumhi
Pompeu
Presidente Prudente
Sacramento
Santo Antonio do Monte
Sao Gotardo
São Luís
Sao Sebastiao do Paraiso
Serra
Sorocaba

Chile

(whole country)

Democratic Republic of
the Congo

Kinshasa

Germany

Kassel

Indonesia

(whole country)
Malang
Surabaya

Iran

(whole country)
Aligudarz
Astara
Azna
Bandar Ganaveh
Bandar-e Anzali
Borazjan
Borujerd
Bushehr
Dorud
Fuman
Khorramabad
Khvormuj
Kuhdasht
Lahijan
Langarud
Rasht
Sowme'eh Sara
Talesh

Lebanon

(whole country)

Libya

Tripoli

Mexico

Juarez

Myanmar

(whole country)

Papua New Guinea

(whole country)
Lae
Mount Hagen
Port Moresby

Peru

Arequipa
Cajamarca
Chichalyo
Chiclayo
Cusco
Huancayo
Lima
Piura
Playas
Tacna
Trujillo

Poland

(whole country)

Saudi Arabia

(whole country)
Abha
Dammam
Ha'il
Jeddah
Mecca
Medina
Riyadh
Ta’if
Tabuk
Unaizah

Serbia and Montenegro

(whole country)
Belgrade
Cacak
Kragujevac
Kraljevo
Krusevac
Niš
Novi Pazar
Novi Sad
Pancevo
Šabac
Subotica
Užice
Valjevo
Zajecar District
Zrenjanin

Thailand

Chiang Mai City

USA

Albuquerque, MN
Bakersfield, CA
Boise, ID
Chicago, IL
Dallas, TX
Denver, CO
Fresno, CA
Honolulu, HI
Kansas City, MO
Las Vegas, NV
Los Angeles, CA
Phoenix, AZ
Portland, OR
Redding, CA
Reno, NV
Sacramento, CA
Salt Lake City, UT
San Francisco, CA
San Jose, CA
Seattle, WA
Spokane, WA
Tucson, AZ
Washington, DC


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