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Max Rapaport is a corporate and telecommunications attorney with an avid interest in the universe of small cell technologies, including pico cell, femto cell and microcellular networks, generally. He also publishes articles on the Website related to developments in these areas.... More
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  • Craig Hallum: Issues Buy Rating On Ruckus And Raises Price Target To $26 – Notes Competitive Advantages Of SmartCell Products

    On January 11th, Craig Hallum Capital Group issued a Buy rating on Ruckus Wireless, with a revised upward price target of $26.00.

    With respect to small cell developments, the authors note that "[t]wo specific announcements at CES - one by the FCC to relieve congestion in Wi-Fi networks ahead of the Gigabit Wi-Fi 11ac launch and one by ATT confirming our belief that Wi-Fi will be part of all of its scheduled 40,000 small-cell deployments over the next two years - reinforce our confidence that we are in the early stages of a very significant secular growth trend in Carrier Wi-Fi. "

    Moreover, the authors surmise that Ruckus is in a unique position to differentiate itself from competitors, as, "limited backhaul availability and standards maturity are the top two factors limiting more rapid deployments of small cells…[and we] believe Ruckus, with its SmartCell API's which feature integrated Wi-Fi access points, a USB slot for pico or femto small cells and 5MHz Wi-Fi backhaul, could be a compelling solution to the backhaul problem as Carriers complete their trials."

    A future competitive advantage, the authors believe is "the SmartCell Gateway product from Ruckus (currently in trials) [which] could be a big driver of competitive differentiation in upcoming months as more Carriers try to procure systems that integrate seamlessly with their cellular networks. We also believe the ratification of HotSpot 2.0 and Passpoint 2.0 standards could also be major drivers for small cells and Carrier Wi-Fi in the future."

    Accordingly, the authors conclude that Ruckus faces potentially strong growth prospects, noting that "Ruckus, given its considerable product differentiation aligned with the needs of the Carrier Wi-Fi market, its first mover advantage in the Carrier Wi-Fi market both in terms of its Carrier relationships and products (SmartCell AP with Wi-Fi backhaul, SmartCell Gateway) and significant mindshare is likely to benefit disproportionately from this trend."

    Jan 13 9:12 AM | Link | Comment!
  • Raymond James: Positive Market Outlook For Cavium

    On January 9th, Raymond James released a positive report following its interview with Cavium CEO, Syed Ali. Cavium, which is headquartered in Mountain View, California, is a fabless semiconductor company that designs integrated processors for networking, communications, and security applications.

    According to the report, Raymond James' analyst team "came away with positive impressions regarding current market conditions and product roadmaps, within the framework of a much more diversified product and customer profile today than just 18 months ago."

    Moreover, according to the report's authors, although Cavium did not provide a financial update this week, they express confidence that "market conditions remain positive for Cavium as various wireless basestation ramps are underway, the CAT 3K program at the company's top customer should start preproduction orders in early 2013, and various new smaller customers (in the security area) are starting to ramp. China is seeing some semblance or early signs of incremental improvement."

    With respect to developments in small cells, the report's authors note that the "company's Fusion processors continue to see deployments in South Korea for its 4G/LTE solutions. " However, one potential inhibiting factor is that "[m]ost small cell deployments today (Cavium does not consider the more commoditized femto cells as part of small cells by the way), are LTE/4G only as 3G coverage is adequate already…[and the] move to 28nm in 2014 will incorporate 3G support."

    Jan 10 8:02 AM | Link | Comment!
  • Cowen And Company: Ericsson Top Pick For Wireless Equipment – Cites Strength In LTE

    Cowen and Company recently named Ericsson as the Top Pick in 2013 for Wireless Equipment, with an Outperform rating. A core finding noted by the report is Ericsson's role in LTE. The authors note that the "push to LTE-A will be driven by the need for improved data capacity to address exploding mobile data usage." Highlighting this potential for increased demand, the authors cite comments from Erik Ekudden, Ericsson's Global Technologies Strategist to the effect that "LTE coverage [will] go from ~5% today to 50% in the next five years. Over this time expect data capacity demands to grow by factor of 14." According to Ekudden, there "three ways to get more capacity: 1) spectrum through new bands or novel use of existing bands, 2) technology innovation such as carrier aggregation, and 3) densification of the network such as using small cells." The authors expect LTE-A infrastructure deployments to begin in late summer with a focus on the early adopter markets of the U.S., Korea, and Japan."

    Underscoring the need for increased capacity, the report references a panel discussion held at Cowen's 2nd annual Trend Spotting Technology Summit on January 3rd, with wireless industry luminaries Sandeep Chennakeshu, Sanjay Jha, Arogyaswami Paulraj, and Erik Ekudden on LTE-Advanced (LTE-A), the next evolution of wireless technology. The authors note that the "panel confirmed LTE-A's ability to address operator needs for carrier aggregation and higher data capacity at faster speeds." Moreover, according to the panel, "LTE-A driven complexities will offer opportunity for innovation across the wireless value chain, particularly in semiconductors and small cell management"… [and] "highlighted increasing complexities in wireless technology, which we believe offer opportunity for innovation across the value chain (particularly in semiconductors and small cell management."

    To address this capacity need, the authors note,"[t]echnologies such as carrier aggregation (joining LTE bands), advancement in MIMO, and small cell interference management" must allow LTE-A to improve network efficiency, enhance end user experience, and support new revenue generating applications - especially video…[and complexity] (26 LTE bands, multiple carrier configurations) within the spectral landscape where LTE networks will be deployed will drive fragmentation and innovation in the wireless semiconductors (e.g. front end modules) and infrastructure markets. These developments, the authors conclude, have the potential to drive fragmentation and innovation in wireless semiconductors (e.g. front end modules) and wireless network topology (small cells). This is particularly significant for such early adopters, as "LTE-A not only brings increased data rates and support for new frequencies/bands, but also improved support for heterogeneous networks (HetNet), particularly small cells."

    Jan 08 6:36 AM | Link | Comment!
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