TTM: Fiber and microwave, oh my - Wireless Backhaul

In forming Telecom Transport Management--a service provider that includes a number wireless industry pioneers that worked at McCaw Cellular (now AT&T Mobility) with number of CLEC leaders--there was a realization that they could become a new alternative to serve the upcoming wireless backhaul gap facing wireless operators migrating from 3G to 4G wireless.

In fact, TTM's sole focus is to provide wireless backhaul services to mobile carriers. Taking what it calls a 'fiber first' model, TTM will complement its wireless backhaul network coverage with microwave links. This approach reflects the reality where the case for fiber can't be made for a specific cell tower location, microwave technology is a viable extension technology. Through this hybrid microwave/fiber approach, TTM can deliver a broad mix of TDM (DS1, DS3, OCx) and Ethernet/IP-based solutions.

"TTM began with microwave access, and had done pretty well with it. I joined in January so I have about eight months experience with TTM now," said TTM President Lynn Refer. "Over time, there's been a realization that microwave has a place in network design, but there are also situations where if you can get fiber in the network and fiber out to the tower it's going to scale a lot better. To some degree it is an economic pricing decision, saying 'Boy, if I can put a fiber there, economically I would rather do that and get some of the scaling and cost benefits.' But if I can't do that because of where the tower is, microwave is an access technology we do very well in terms of designing systems that stay up and stay stable."

Although it won't reveal who its customers are, company CEO Lynn Refer did tell FierceTelecom that TTM does provide service to four of the largest wireless operators in 10 metro areas on the East Coast and in the Midwest.

TTM: Fiber and microwave, oh my - Wireless Backhaul