Still Making Antenna Tilts the Old-Fashioned Way? It's Time to Consider a New Approach.
Antenna tilts have a dramatic impact on coverage and interference and are a key weapon in engineer's RF Optimization arsenal. Interference due to sub-optimal tilts is one of the leading causes of impaired data services capacity and throughput. Yet all too often the process for making tilts and then assessing whether the change worked or not is so manual that it just doesn't get done.
Traditional approaches to antenna tilting include making rule of thumb guesstimates from drive test coverage maps, modeling changes using planning tools, painstakingly collecting performance statistics before and after changes and performing before and drive tests. For physical tilts, which incur significant cost, the main challenge is making sure the change will deliver value. For complex problems, where multiple cells or multiple changes are involved, this can be time consuming.
For electrical tilts, which may have little or no cost impact, the main challenge is ensuring the change worked, which can be a huge challenge given the sheer number of new sites, carriers and technologies going into many networks today.
Automate RF Optimization of the Live Network with Actix.
These challenges led us to develop our solution for RF optimization based on antenna configuration. Our approach is based on our ActixOne optimization platform and it applies to 2G, 3G and 4G technology. Here are some of the key aspects of our approach which enable better results in less time:
- Seamless troubleshooting to optimization – Once a RF problem like interference or coverage is identified, there's no need to jump into four different tools to solve the problem. With ActixOne, you can seamlessly select one of our optimization algorithms to provide recommended tilts, or use our fast and easy “what-if” tools to manually evaluate potential tilt changes.
- Automate before and after analysis – ActixOne tracks every configuration change you make to the network and makes it simple to view and compare performance before and after the change. For remote electrical tilt systems, you can use near real-time performance statistics or subscriber traces to get instant feedback on recent changes.
- Use all your mobile network data – There's no silver bullet to optimizing antenna tilts. You need network OSS, subscriber traces and drive surveys at different times and for different needs. Sure, drive surveys may increasingly be a last resort, but there are times when you need highly accurate position and RF information to tackle a thorny issue. Furthermore, although geo-located subscriber traces offer a powerful new tool, this feature may not be available or deployed for all network infrastructure.
- Automate data loading and management – Whether you're working off 100 GB of drive survey data or a Terabyte of geo-located subscriber trace data, ActixOne's scalable processing and data management features completely automate the process.
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