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Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks 1.

Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

1. INTRODUCTION

Networks Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks 1. INTRODUCTION A large part of the mobile phones

A large part of the mobile phones are dual rate capable and, as a consequence, it is possible to widely

introduce the half rate mode in order to increase the capacity of a GSM network.

The first goal of this design paper is to assess the capacity gain that can be brought by the half rate mode in terms of TRX. However, the half rate introduction has an impact on the network, hence the need

to evaluate the impact on the speech quality on one hand and on the BSS dimensioning on the

other hand.

2. HALF RATE ACTIVATION

The half rate codec is activated dynamically depending on the load and on the thresholds that are defined

at

the OMC-R. The following figure presents a standard case:

State

1:

Load

<

Threshold

FRDR: all the users use the full rate codec

State 2: Threshold FRDR: the

new users are served in half rate

mode

>

long

as

as

Load

Threshold DRFR

State

Threshold

DRFR: the new users are served in full rate mode

3:

Load

<

100%

90%

80%

70%

60%

50%

40%

30%

20%

10%

0%

Cell Load FR mode DR mode FR mode Threshold FR ->DR (THR_FR_LOAD_U) State 1 State
Cell Load
FR mode
DR mode
FR mode
Threshold FR ->DR
(THR_FR_LOAD_U)
State 1
State 2
State 3
Threshold DR -> FR
(THR_FR_LOAD_L)
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
45
50
55
60
65
70
75
80
85
90

Time (min)

In

in

rate mode only during the peaks of traffic (i.e. state 2 on the figure). Thus, a 100% Half Rate Call

Ratio does not mean that all communications are served in half rate mode all the time.

the following parts, the term Half Rate Call Ratio (HRCR) is used. It represents the percentage of users

half rate mode compared to the total number of users. As presented above, the users are served in half

Alcatel File Reference

3DC 21150 0325 TQZZA

Date

11/2005

Edition

Ed 02

Page

1

Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

The BSS is able to differentiate the allocation policy of the voice codec between two kinds of users, for example the low ARPU ones and the high ARPU ones. The MSC could use some data about the type of subscriber (information stored at HLR) and modify subsequently the assignment type. Two options may be envisaged:

Systematically allocate high ARPU users on FR channels, while low ARPU users are allocated on FR channels in low loaded cells and on HR channels in high loaded cells (this would be achieved by using the value "FR" for high ARPU users and DR FR P NCA, i.e. FR preferred, for the other users)

Systematically allocate low ARPU users on HR channels, while high ARPU users are allocated on FR channels in low loaded cells and on HR channels in high loaded cells (this would be achieved by using the value "HR" for low ARPU users and DR FR P NCA, i.e. FR preferred, for the other users)

Let us note finally that:

Only the dual rate capable mobiles can be served in half rate mode

Only the TRX that are declared as dual rate TRX can be used in half-rate mode. Thanks to the half rate flexibility feature, it is possible to do it TRX per TRX

The Half Rate Mode is activated dynamically during the peaks of traffic. The BSS makes it possible to customize the voice codec allocation policy depending on the kind of user, for example high ARPU or low ARPU.

3. IMPACT ON SPEECH QUALITY Different Codecs Comparison 4 3.5 3 AMR-HR EFR 2.5 HR
3. IMPACT ON SPEECH QUALITY
Different Codecs Comparison
4
3.5
3
AMR-HR
EFR
2.5
HR
AMR-HR opt
2
AMR-FR
1.5
1
20
16
12
8
6
4
2
0
Pace

C/I

This figure presents some speech quality results retrieved from platform tests. The speech quality provided by the ordinary Half Rate codec is much lower than the one achieved with the ordinary Full Rate or Enhanced Full Rate codecs. However, the sensitivity remains the same one (minimum C/I for which the speech quality is acceptable). The half rate codec is not more sensitive to the interference than the FR

Alcatel File Reference

3DC 21150 0325 TQZZA

Date

11/2005

Edition

Ed 02

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Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

codec. The introduction of AMR mitigates the impact of the half rate mode. Indeed, AMR-HR provides better speech quality than the ordinary HR and is as good as the FR in good radio conditions.

Good Radio Conditions

All Codecs Histogram All Codecs Histogram 80.00% 80.00% Bad Bad Bad Poor Poor Poor Fair
All Codecs Histogram
All Codecs Histogram
80.00%
80.00%
Bad
Bad
Bad
Poor
Poor
Poor
Fair
Fair
Fair
Good
Good
Good
Excellent
Excellent
Excellent
70.00%
70.00%
60.00%
60.00%
50.00%
50.00%
40.00%
40.00%
30.00%
30.00%
20.00%
20.00%
10.00%
10.00%
0.00%
0.00%
AMR-HR
AMR-HR
EFR
EFR
HR
HR
1
1
1.2
1.2
1.4
1.4
1.6
1.6
1.8
1.8
2
2
2.2
2.2
2.4
2.4
2.6
2.6
2.8
2.8
3
3
3.2
3.2
3.4
3.4
3.6
3.6
3.8
3.8
4
4

Class

 

Range

Excellent

PACE >= 3.5

Good

2.7

<= PACE < 3.5

Fair

2.1

<= PACE < 2.7

Poor

1.5

<= PACE < 2.1

Bad

 

PACE < 1.5

Bad Radio Conditions

All Codecs Histogram All Codecs Histogram 25.00% 25.00% Bad Bad Bad Poor Poor Poor Fair
All Codecs Histogram
All Codecs Histogram
25.00%
25.00%
Bad
Bad
Bad
Poor
Poor
Poor
Fair
Fair
Fair
Good
Good
Good
Excellent
Excellent
Excellent
20.00%
20.00%
15.00%
15.00%
10.00%
10.00%
5.00%
5.00%
0.00%
0.00%
AMR-HR
AMR-HR
EFR
EFR
HR
HR
1 1
1.2 1.2
1.4 1.4
1.6 1.6
1.8 1.8
2 2
2.2 2.2
2.4 2.4
2.6 2.6
2.8 2.8
3 3
3.2 3.2
3.4 3.4
3.6 3.6
3.8 3.8
4 4

Class

 

Range

Excellent

PACE >= 3.5

Good

2.7

<= PACE < 3.5

Fair

2.1

<= PACE < 2.7

Poor

1.5

<= PACE < 2.1

Bad

 

PACE < 1.5

The field measurements depicted on both figures lead to the same conclusion. In good radio conditions, AMR-HR provides significant gains compared to the normal HR codec. In poor radio conditions, the gain of AMR-HR is lower. This is due to the fact that at low C/I, the AMR-HR codecs that are used are quite close to the standard HR. However, a feature makes it possible to force the use of the AMR FR codec if the radio conditions are beyond a certain threshold.

The feature TFO (Tandem Free Operation) can be also used as a way of mitigating the impact of the Half Rate codec on the speech quality.

TFO gain

MS to Fixed Line 4 MS to MS without TFO MS to MS with TFO
MS to Fixed Line
4
MS to MS without TFO
MS to MS with TFO
3.5
3
2.5
EFR
FR
HR
PACE
TC TC TC TC Codec GSM Codec GSM
TC
TC
TC
TC
Codec GSM
Codec GSM

As depicted on the figure, this feature makes it possible to bypass the transcoders in case of a mobile-to-mobile call. This results in a much better speech quality given that there is no need for a double transcoding (see figure).

One advantage of this feature is that it is transparent for the mobile. However, let us note that the transcoders cannot be bypassed if one of the users is using the AMR codec.

Alcatel File Reference

3DC 21150 0325 TQZZA

Date

11/2005

Edition

Ed 02

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3

Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

The users in ordinary half rate mode experience a lower speech quality but there is no impact on the minimum C/I value necessary to obtain an acceptable quality. The activation of AMR and/or TFO mitigates the speech quality degradation.

4. IMPACT ON CAPACITY

Two half-rate users can be mixed on the same time slot. Therefore, as presented on the first figure, the cell capacity can be considerably increased thanks to a higher Half Rate Call Ratio. That capacity gain can be also represented as a gain in the number of needed TRX for a fixed number of subscribers (see second figure).

160% 140% 120% 100% 2 TRX 80% 4 TRX 6 TRX 60% 40% 20% 0%
160%
140%
120%
100%
2
TRX
80%
4
TRX
6
TRX
60%
40%
20%
0%
0
20
40
60
80
100
Half Rate Call Ratio
Capacity Gain
8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 0 20 40 60 80 100
8
7
6
5
4
3
2
1
0
0
20
40
60
80
100
Half Rate Call Ratio
# TRX
5 4 3 2 1 0 0 20 40 60 80 100 Half Rate Call Ratio

1000users

users

1500users

users

2000users

users

5 4 3 2 1 0 0 20 40 60 80 100 Half Rate Call Ratio

Should a differentiation between low ARPU users and high ARPU users be used, the Half Rate Call Ratio (HRCR) would represent the sharing between the users. For example, if the high ARPU users correspond to 20% of the users, the HRCR is equal to 80% and the capacity gain brought by the activation of the half rate mode is then around 70%.

The introduction of the half rate mode provides a considerable capacity gain in terms of number of subscribers (around 70% for a 80% Half Rate Call Ratio) thanks to the multiplexing of two users on the same time slot during the peaks of traffic. The Half Rate Call Ratio can represent the sharing between high ARPU users and low ARPU users.

5. IMPACT ON THE BSS

The first impact on the BSS is of course the fact that the load can be increased. This may lead to a higher signalling load, to some additional BSCs, to a higher Ater-CS traffic… However, the goal of that part is to assess the possible negative impacts of the introduction of the half rate mode on the network for a constant number of users (typically if the half rate mode is used to decrease the number of TRX). From this perspective, two points need to be stressed out:

Alcatel File Reference

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Date

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Edition

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Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

1 Dual Rate TRX is equivalent to 2 Full Rate TRX regarding the BSC dimensioning. Moreover, it is not possible to mix Dual Rate and Full Rate TRX within the same TCUC. Given that, in order to reach a 100% HRCR, it is necessary to define all the TRX as DR TRX, the impact on the number of BSC is quite significant. However, for B10, this limitation will be removed in the BSC Evolution and, for earlier releases, it is compensated anyway by the fact that fewer TRXs are needed for the same traffic.

It is not possible to use 16k statistical multiplexing and 16k static multiplexing on the Abis if there is at least one DR TRX in the BTS. As a consequence, only 64k statistical multiplexing can be used. However, that’s not a real constraint given that with B9 and the dynamic Abis, it is more efficient to use 64k statistical multiplexing anyway.

The introduction of the half rate mode has no negative impact on the BSS, especially from B10 onwards when using the BSC Evolution.

6. STUDY CASE

Let us assume that 10 S444 sites are needed to cover a certain area with a certain required capacity (10 * 3 * 1000 users). As depicted on the following figure, a higher half rate call ratio leads to smaller needed configurations.

This results in:

A smaller number of TRX

A smaller and cheaper cabinet (for example, MBO2 for S444 and MBO1 for S222)

A higher output power (no combining loss for S222). It can be used to increase the indoor penetration or to decrease the antenna height (for example, from 40m to 30m for the same cell range)

4 S444 3 S333 2 S222 1 0 0 50 100 # TRX
4
S444
3
S333
2
S222
1
0
0
50
100
# TRX

Half Rate Call Ratio

As shown on the following graph, there is then a direct impact on the site CAPEX (up to 24% gain on the total site CAPEX for a 100% half rate call ratio). The gain is even higher when considering only the equipments (up to 33% gain).

Alcatel File Reference

3DC 21150 0325 TQZZA

Date

11/2005

Edition

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Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

Design Paper: Half Rate Impact On GSM Networks

CAPEX comparison 6% gain 24% gain 3x4 MP 3x3 MP 3x2 MP
CAPEX comparison
6% gain
24% gain
3x4 MP
3x3 MP
3x2 MP

ServicesTransmission Feeder Antennas Combiners Tower Cabinet TRX

TransmissionServices Feeder Antennas Combiners Tower Cabinet TRX

FeederServices Transmission Antennas Combiners Tower Cabinet TRX

AntennasServices Transmission Feeder Combiners Tower Cabinet TRX

CombinersServices Transmission Feeder Antennas Tower Cabinet TRX

TowerServices Transmission Feeder Antennas Combiners Cabinet TRX

CabinetServices Transmission Feeder Antennas Combiners Tower TRX

TRXServices Transmission Feeder Antennas Combiners Tower Cabinet

The gain can be also translated in a decrease in the number of sites:

Capacity limited case: if the same number of TRX per site is kept, fewer sites are needed given the capacity of each cell is higher

Coverage limited case: if the decrease in the number of TRX makes it possible to obtain a configuration without combining losses, fewer sites are needed given the cell range of each cell is higher. However, let us note that the capacity of those cells must be then increased because each one serves more users.

The introduction of the Half Rate mode leads to a significant site CAPEX gain. In that example, considering the total site CAPEX, a 50% Half Rate Call Ratio brings a 6% gain while a 100% Half Rate Call Ratio brings a 24% gain.

The capacity gain can be also translated in a decrease in the number of sites.

7.

CONCLUSION

The introduction of the half rate mode is a possible way to increase the capacity of a network. Indeed, during the peaks of traffic, two half-rate users can be combined on one time slot. Thus, either the number of handled speech users can be increased or some TRX can be saved. The latter leads to a significant site CAPEX gain or to a decrease in the number of sites.

However, such an increase has an impact on the speech quality. This degradation can be mitigated through the use of the AMR codec and/or the feature TFO (Tandem Free Operation). Moreover, the BSS can enable some users to always use the full rate codec. Thus, the half rate mode can be activated for only a part of the subscribers.

Related Documents:

3 Design Paper – Densification of GSM Networks

End of DOCUMENT

Alcatel File Reference

3DC 21150 0325 TQZZA

Date

11/2005

Edition

Ed 02

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