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MIMO-based Communications Systems

  • August 2014
  • -
  • Practel Group


Users' demand for more efficient networking brought to life many technological innovations. One of them is MIMO (multiple input multiple output), which became very popular in wireless systems - almost all recent and future 3GPP standards use (or will be using) variations of such a technique. MIMO also can be used in wireline systems.

This report is based on the Practel's analysis of MIMO-based communications systems, their technologies and markets specifics. Particular, the following industry standards that utilize MIMO have been considered:

IEEE 802.11n
IEEE 802.11ac
ITU G.hn.
The goal of this report was to characterize MIMO advantages and specifics for each standard. It also addresses market characteristics of discussed technologies. Report concentrates on corresponding industries players and their products.

MIMO characteristics, structures and types are also addressed and compared.

The report is written for a wide audience of managers and technical staff that involved in the design and implementation of advanced communications systems.


Considerable research was performed using the Internet. Information from various Web sites was studied and analyzed; evaluation of publicly available marketing and technical publications was also conducted. Telephone conversations and interviews were held with industry analysts, technical experts and executives. In addition to these interviews and primary research, secondary sources were used to develop a more complete mosaic of the market landscape, including industry and trade publications, conferences and seminars.

The overriding objective throughout the work has been to provide valid and relevant information. This has led to a continual review and update of the information content.

Target Audience

The report was developed for service providers, vendors, network operators and managers, Enterprise IT staff, investors and end users seeking to gain a deeper understanding of MIMO- based networking.

The end users can gain thorough understanding of product's market and capabilities as well as the economics of using these technologies products to improve cost efficiency.

For equipment vendors, this report provides information on competition.

Table Of Contents

MIMO-based Communications Systems
1.0 Introduction

1.1 General
1.2 Goal
1.3 Structure
1.4 Research Methodology
1.5 Target Audience
2.0 MIMO - Concept, Functions and Structures

2.1 History
2.2 Concept: MIMO in Wireless Communications
2.3 Types of MIMO
2.4 Summary - MIMO Benefits
3.0 MIMO Role in LTE Development

3.1 Releases
3.2 LTE Timetable
3.3 Broadband Wireless Communications-Phases
3.4 LTE Standardization-Industry Collaboration
3.4.1 Industry Initiative
3.4.2 Intellectual Property
3.5 Key Features of LTE
3.6 Details
3.6.1 Evolved UMTS Radio Access Network (EUTRAN)
3.6.2 UE Categories
3.6.3. Evolved Packet Core (EPC)
3.7 LTE Advanced
3.8 SON
3.9 Voice Support
3.9.1 VoLTE
3.10 Market
3.10.1 Drivers
3.10.2 Demand: Wireless Broadband
3.10.3 LTE Market Projections
3.11 Summary of LTE Benefits
3.12 Vendors
4M Wireless (acquired by u-blox in 2012)
Altair Semiconductor
Lime Microsystems
Motorola Solutions
Nokia Siemens Networks
picoChip (acquired by Mindspeed in 2012)
3.13 Specifics LTE MIMO
3.13.1 Techniques
3.13.2 Modes
3.13.3 MIMO: LTE Release 8
3.13.4 MIMO: LTE Release 9
3.13.5 MIMO: LTE Advanced
3.13.6 LTE/LTE-A - MIMO Benefits
3.13.7 Projections
4.0 MIMO Role in 802.11n Development

4.1 802.11n Status
4.1.1 Environment
4.1.2 Draft v. 1.0
4.1.3 Draft v. 2.0
4.1.4 Further Developments and IEEE Approval
4.2 IEEE 802.11n and Wi-Fi Alliance
4.3 802.11n Technology Specifics
4.3.1 Major Advances
4.4 PHY and MAC
4.5 Major Standard Features: Summary
4.5.1 Specifics
4.5.2 Channel Bandwidth
4.5.3 Backward Compatibility
4.5.4 Adaptation
4.5.5 Security
4.5.6 Enhancements
4.6 Benefits and Applications
4.6.1 Benefits
4.6.2 Applications
4.7 Market
4.7.1 Drivers
4.7.2 Market Forecast
4.8 Industry
Aerohive (APs)
Aruba (APs)
Atheros-Qualcomm (Chipsets, WUSB)
Buffalo (Router, AP)
Belkin (Routers, Adaptors, WUBS)
Broadcom (Chipsets, WUSB)
Cisco (AP)
Celeno (HDVD)
D-Link (Routers, WUSB)
Extreme (AP)
Marvell (Chipsets)
Meru (Family of Products)
Motorola Solution (Tools, AP)
Netgear (Router, AP)
OvisLink (Router, WUBS)
Redpine Signals (Chipsets)
Ruckus (AP, Multimedia)
Quantenna (chipsets)
TrendNet (Routers, AP, WUSB)
ZyXel (AP, Router, WUSB)
4.9 MIMO and 802.11n
4.9.1 MIMO Specifics: 802.11n
4.9.2 High Throughput (HT) Station (STA)
4.9.3 Basic Concept
4.9.4 MIMO Contributions
5.0 MIMO Role in 802.11ac Development

5.1 General - Improving 802.11n Characteristics
5.2 Approval
5.3 Major Features: Summary
5.4 Major Benefits
5.5 Usage Models
5.5.1 Phases
5.6 Projections
5.7 Industry
Redpine Signals
5.8 MIMO in 802.11ac Standard
5.8.1 Comparison
5.8.2 Projections
6.0 MIMO Role in G.hn Development

6.1 HomePNA Alliance
6.1.1 General
6.1.2 HomePNA Specification 3.1: Major Features
6.1.3 Fast EoC HomePNA
6.1.4 Major Benefits
6.2 ITU Efforts
6.2.1 General
6.3 G.hn Details
6.4 Acceptance
6.4.1 IEEE1905.1
6.5 HomePNA and G.hn
6.6 Samples of Vendors
Sigma Designs
6.7 G.hn MIMO
6.7.1 Project
6.7.2 Goal
6.7.3 G.hn MIMO Benefits
6.7.4 Specifics
6.7.5 First Certification
7.0 Conclusions

List Of Charts

Figure 1: 2x2 MIMO
Figure 2: Major Antenna Configurations
Figure 3: MIMO Concept (2x2)
Figure 4: Illustration - Beamforming
Figure 5: MU-MIMO - Downlink
Figure 6: SU-MIMO and MU-MIMO
Figure 7: Evolution Path
Figure 8: Towards Wireless Mobile Broadband
Figure 9: LTE - IP
Figure 10: LTE - Reference Architecture
Figure 11: Projection: Global Broadband Mobile Subscribers Base (Bil.)
Figure 12: LTE Market-Subscribers' Base (Bil)
Figure 13: TAM: LTE Global Equipment Sale ($B)
Figure 14: Spectrum Efficiency
Figure 15: TAM: LTE MIMO Sales ($B)
Figure 16: 802.11n MAC
Figure 17: 802.11 Protocol Family MAC Frame Structure
Figure 18: TAM: Global Sales - Wi-Fi Chipsets ($B)
Figure 19: TAM: Global Sales - Wi-Fi Chipsets (Bill. Units)
Figure 20: TAM: Global Sales - 802.11n Chipsets ($B)
Figure 21: TAM: Global Sales - 802.11n Chipsets (Bil. Units)
Figure 22: 802.11n Market Geography
Figure 23: Channel Assignment
Figure 24: 802.11ac Consumers AP Shipping-Global (Mil. Units)
Figure 25: 802.11ac Consumers AP Shipping-Global ($B)
Figure 26: Projections: Global 802.11ac Consumers AP MIMO Sales ($B)
Figure 27: Rate
Table 1: MIMO Variations
Table 2: MIMO Benefits
Table 3: 3GPP Releases
Table 4: Initial LTE Characteristics: Illustration
Table 5: LTE Frequency Bands
Table 6: Users Equipment Categories (Rel. 8)
Table 7: UE Categories (Rel. 10)
Table 8: LTE Transmission Modes - MIMO
Table 9: Additional Details
Table 10: 802.11 Standard Characteristics - Draft 1.0
Table 11: 802.11n PHY
Table 12: Comparison: 802.11 Family Members Transfer Rates
Table 13: 802.11n Enhancements
Table 14: 802.11n Advantages
Table 15: MIMO PHY Characteristics
Table 16: Functionalities
Table 17: Specifics
Table 18: Rates
Table 19: Usage Models
Table 20: Phases
Table 21: 802.11n vs. 802.11ac
Table 22: ITU and HomePNA Standards

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