Thanks for the insight Stuart. It may be interesting to our broader Mobility audience for you to open a Discusion highlighting perspective, challenges, and hot topics in the current PSME and digital TV debate. I'm not an RF guy, but given a stadium's fixed location, my guess is WiFi, WiMAX, & Femto are options for handling large RF transcations. As to stadiums, fans, and an entertaining new generation of efficient operations, as well as exciting experiences, you are spot on! Certainly these new expereinces need enough spectrum, enough capacity in LAN/WAN network, and intelligent processing and security for the transaction requests and services! Check out a few stories on Cisco's ground breaking offer for StadiumVision http://newsroom.cisco.com/dlls/2009/prod_052609.html http://newsroom.cisco.com/dlls/2008/prod_111108b.html For example, the new technology features in the stadium are designed to support future fan use of mobile devices for ordering concessions from their seat, viewing instant replays or chatting in real time with friends inside and outside the stadium. As to Fair Usage Policies and reduced risk of pirated videos via the mobile internet devices ... these too are important across the board. http://www.cisco.com/en/US/solutions/ns341/ns525/ns537/ns548/mobile_web.html Just for fun, I'm thinking a more interesting revenue generating stream of the future might come from encouraging (rather than threatening) fans to stream their visual vantage points into a smart stadium grid, and offering that visual element of the grid to two sources - the professional producers that are editing and broadcasting the live show (to local big screens and to remote fans), and/or a virtual community. Carriers and stadium venue could work out arrangment to give you back stage access after show, discount to next venue, auction or set a fixed price or accept highest offer for you contribution ... whatever works ... such that if your stream is selected, you (and your carrier??) are compensated in some way for your contribution. Anyway, I see the greatest value coming from getting innovative people working together to improve the experiences The Boss has to offer
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I'd like to give a perspective from Europe as to whether femtocells are a petaopportunity or an attodiversion. I've attached a short paper I wrote following the Barcelona Mobile World Congress of 2008. Some of the technical and cost issues have moved forward since then, but less progress has been made on figuring what market gap femtocells will fill - at least in developed fixed & mobile markets in densely populated European countries. Below is a summary of the paper. A femtocell can be thought of as a mobile basestation for the home. It provides enough capacity for about four phones and has a range of about 200 metres. However, instead of being a direct part of a mobile network operator (MNO) network, it plugs first into the home broadband connection. Voice and data traffic to and from a handset connected to a femtocell therefore involves the assets of an MNO (the femtocell has to use licensed spectrum), an Internet Service Provider (ISP) and a local line fixed telecoms operator at the very least. Femtocells must overcome a number of technical barriers if they are to be considered “fit-for-purpose” as an alternative to current network architectures or competing developments like WiMax. One way to identify whether a real opportunity exists is to consider what problem a player would be trying to solve with this product, what product they are using today to solve that problem and therefore to ask what kind of a difference will the new product make. Using this approach it would appear that: femtocells could make a significant difference to MNOs’ problems of margin loss and cost improvement femtcocells can make some difference to fixed telco/cableco/ISPs, but this is unlikely to be significant, compared with other initiatives they could undertake Crucially, femtocells do not appear to represent a major breakthrough for any problem a user faces, so it is not clear what market gap they would be able to fill. As a result, femtocell developers and vendors are generally in the “sounds great in theory but revenue is behind in practice” state of evolution. The reality is that technical challenges have not yet been overcome and that mobile operators are reluctant to move to large-scale trials or deployments until costs are further down and the technical and business case more proven. Even when this is achieved, it is not clear that mass market users will be interested in a femtocell solution.
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