Mobile World Congress, Feb 2009
Node-H was represented by CEO, Mike Cronin, at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, in February 2009. The Congress was subdued, but Femtocells was one of a few topics to cause a buzz. Node-H has focussed its initial development on the 3GPP Iu-h Femtocell architecture. Market feedback is confirming that it is this standard which will allow operators to roll out Femtocells in tens of millions because they will have genuine competition in the supply chain with multiple sources at chipset, software and device level, supplying interoperable devices.
All of the main chipset and equipment vendors were present. Qualcomm's announcement that they would enter the business caused some excitement. It is confirmation, if any were needed, that the Femtocell market is a serious volume proposition. Qualcomm will be the first non-startup to spend serious money on a Femtocell chipset. Competitors took some comfort from Qualcomm's schedule which is not aggressive.
The operators held back on announcements, but were discussing trial results behind closed doors. T-Mobile was the exception which announced limited commercial deployment in Germany from mid-2009. T-Mobile USA's UMA Femtocell approach seems to be orphaned.
Node-H had positive feeback from discussions with chipset vendors, device vendors and also Femtocell Gateway vendors.