Similar to many operators around the world, Pelephone, the first mobile operator in Israel with over 2 million subscribers, had an extensive transmission network of point to point microwave solutions (18, 23GHz) to backhaul their cell sites. While roughly 70% are connected with fiber for backhaul, 30% were using microwave for a total of more than 500 microwave links.
As the Radio Access Network added capacity with the introduction of LTE and the latest 5G NR, the microwave links began running out of capacity needed to connect these cell sites. While range was good with traditional microwave, the capacities topped out at 400Mbps which could only be achieved with advanced technologies.
Three years ago the Israel government opened the E-Band (70/80GHz) to operators, and Pelephone as a leader and innovator did not wait.
“We have seen the traffic levels on our network experience huge growth with each new cellular technology” said Pelephone’s Transmission Network Senior Director, Yaniv Shahar. “We believe that mmWave, and specifically Siklu mmWave, is a must for our Mobile Backhaul network to support today and tomorrow’s data tidal wave”.