Planning saves time and money, and often large amounts of both. All operators of the radio spectrum are passionate about efficiency – getting the maximum return for the minimum outlay. Planning a network with the smallest amount of base stations needed to meet service requirements is the way to do that, whether the network is local, regional or national.
Planning begins with clearly understanding the user requirement. A user requirement shows what service the user expects in time, space and service. In space, the requirement defines precisely which geographic areas are to be covered; in service, the specification may define the call types to be supported, the service for packet transmission or the data throughput; and, in time defines the way the user expects the network to evolve.
The documents listed cover issues relating to planning and provide a framework for the structure and management of planning projects.
Planning progresses by expressing the user requirement electronically in a planning tool then applying selected infrastructure. The specification normally includes performance parameters such as path availability, confidence in achieving a particular connectivity, limits to intra-network interference for given spectrum blocks and the like. At any stage the plan can be compared with the requirement.
Once a satisfactory plan has been developed on-screen, it can be exported to allow infrastructure to be costed, revenue determined and metrics developed to show return on investment. ATDI offers a unique service – the automatic planning of networks using a goal-seek algorithm. This means that large networks can be defined and costed in days.