LAS VEGAS—Femtocells have been touted as the most efficient solution to in-building coverage and carrier backhaul, but if you’d like to get a taste of the buzz in person, head over to Airvana’s booth at the CTIA conference. There, they’ll be showcasing the device’s new capabilities and repeating a Mobile World Congress (MWC) demonstration of what the gadgets can do in the home.
The company’s femtocell, branded HubBub, bridges mobile and home environments through converged services and location-based intelligence. It is the only CDMA femtocell to support both traditional voice and EV-DO broadband data services in the same device, the company says.
The handy, high-powered hubs have the ability to provide accurate presence information of where handsets are in the home. For instance, when a family member enters or leaves the zone generated by the femtocell, the device automatically generates an SMS text message such as “I got home” or “I am leaving home” to another family member away from home and connected to the commercial macro network. These messages can be transmitted equally well to other media, such as e-mail or Facebook pages.
Another nifty function of the device is its ability to connect handsets with devices on the femtocell home network, which Airvana previously demonstrated at MWC in February. In the demonstration, a picture from the mobile handset is automatically displayed on a digital picture frame as the handset enters the femtozone. The femtocell creates direct connectivity between the handset and the digital frame.
The company has moved to encourage software developers and hardware designers to push the technology forward. Airvana is in the process of developing an open application programming interface for the femtocell, which will allow developers to build their own apps for the device. They’ve already partnered with several companies, including Hitachi, Motorola, Pirelli and Thomson. One of the designs, a combination touch screen digital photo frame and femtocell developed by Motorola, was a finalist in this year’s CTIA E-Tech Awards program.