Happy customers result in a thriving business. Licensed telecommunications service provider WIRUlink was experiencing high levels of interference on five of the towers it deploys on its Gauteng network. Recognising the need to provide ever-faster services to its current and prospective customers, the company instituted an upgrade programme to replace its existing technology.
Company technical director, Riaan Maree, explains that a high demand for their services in these areas was thwarted by the noisy RF environment. “We were faced with a situation where we could not service any new customers on these particular towers due to the lowered throughput levels and excessive interference, caused by the vast number of other service provider networks in the region. As existing customers of MiRO and users of Cambium technology, we were thrilled when Cambium released the ePMP 2000 system.”
According to Marco de Ru, CTO at MiRO, the ePMP 2000 is the ideal solution for the issues experienced by WIRUlink for a number of reasons. The system uses Hypure™ technology with Intelligent Filtering and Smart Beamforming. Intelligent Filtering automatically cleans up the signals received by the access points and keeps its own transmissions clean. Smart Beamforming creates narrow, targeted beams to each subscriber, thereby blocking out multiple sources of interference. With real GPS synchronisation, self-interference is minimised, enabling the establishment of higher quality customer links resulting in stable, high-throughput connectivity. Together these features result in excellent network performance in areas with high levels of interference.
“In addition, ePMP 2000 is backwards compatible with ePMP 1000, the system deployed by WIRUlink earlier this year. This results in reduced costs and a protection of investment. However, not only is the new technology compatible with earlier versions, but it is also completely scalable, thereby providing WIRUlink with a sustainable growth roadmap,” De Ru continues.
WIRUlink switched its existing customers on the five towers from an ageing legacy system to Cambium’s ePMP 1000 in April 2016 and the phased programme to upgrade to the ePMP 2000 system commenced in August. The upgrade involves replacing the equipment on the tower side and linking it to the existing customer radios via a software upgrade. Compatibility between the new system and these radios is a huge bonus for WIRUlink customers, resulting in a cost-effective, and higher-performance solution.
Maree explains that the high-site installation teams were able to upgrade each tower to the new ePMP 2000 over a period of one to one-and-a-half days. “Since we run the new ePMP 2000 equipment in parallel with the previous systems until all clients have been upgraded, we are able to guarantee that customers experience zero downtime. The switchover from ePMP 1000 to ePMP 2000 is seamless and customers are able to immediately experience the improved throughput and more stable link provided by the new system.”
WIRUlink’s roll-out of the first 40 ePMP 2000 sectors at 10 towers has been completed with great success. WIRUlink is currently planning the next upgrade phase for another 60 existing and new towers to the newer hardware.
By: Allyson Koekhoven