This post is by Jay Klein, CTO & VP Allot Communications
Mobile operators are getting the message. People love using their apps. And they rely on the mobile service operators to connect them to the Internet so they can use their apps. I think it’s safe to say that mobile data use is driven by apps. That’s why we see so many MSOs taking the next logical step and offering application-centric service plans, which often include zero-rating for like Facebook and WhatsApp, or flexible pricing models like AT&T’s sponsored data plans, or special rates for music, radio and movie streaming from Deezer, Spotify, YouTube, Vimeo, and Metacafe to name a few.
To get in on this action and a whole lot more, LTE operators can leverage the TDF (traffic detection function) in their network. TDF is the key to identifying the apps in use at any given time, and deciding how to treat each app. Charge less for it; charge more for it, zero-rate it, apply its usage against a shared allowance, charge for overage – or not; give it better QoS than other apps, and so on. But that’s starting at the end.
LTE operators should begin by leveraging their TDF to collect valuable usage data from the network. To find out what apps customers use, when and how often. Think of it. Analyzing each customer’s application usage on each device under which contract and in response to a particular customer retention campaign can yield super valuable information for application-centric segmentation, service planning and tariffing. The ARPU opportunities are as numerous as the apps.
I think the 3GPP Forum was on to something when they defined TDF. It’s the key to application-centric services (and a whole lot more) in LTE networks and it is the only network element designated for handling OTT (over-the-top) Internet applications.
Come hear Jay’s presentation: “Finding the Diamonds in LTE Big Data” June 24th 12:35pm @ “Service Innovation & Voice over LTE” track