I've just started trialling a femtocell in my home. It's the Access Gateway from Vodafone UK. So far, it's great. Although I live in central London the mobile reception in my home is appalling. Now, after having registered my mobile number with the gateway, I get a strong signal indoors and all being well will never miss a mobile call or text again!
Trialling the femtocell, and thinking about how it can be used, certainly brings into perspective the conundrum faced by mobile operators with the femtocell business model. It is great for coverage indoors if like me you suffer from poor access to the macro network. But other than that, if you already have WiFi, why would you need a femtocell for anything else? Even my mobile broadband service would be no use to me if my fixed connection went down as I need the fixed broadband for the femtocell backhaul...
Home networking perhaps? Offloading traffic? Hard to see it at the moment. But an all-singing, all-dancing router with WiFi, cellular, and home networking support- now you're talking.
While installing my femtocell I also tested my broadband speed: 11 Mbps on the downlink! Way to go, Virgin Media! Shame the uplink is still below 1 Mbps though.