Reston, VA – 25 November, 2015- Ascom Network Testing announced today it had won the award for Best LTE Core Network Product at the recently concluded LTE North America 2015 conference in Dallas, Texas. The company’s winning entry centered around TEMS™ Monitor Master, its offering for performing active testing and monitoring of any IMS-based service being deployed in the core network.
Finalists’ applications were reviewed by an exclusive panel of leading experts from Senza Fili Consulting, iGR Research, Signals Research Group and Wireless 20/20, and winners were unveiled during a ceremony hosted by Vicky Livingston, Head of Communications and Analyst Relations for 4G Americas.
Guest blog post written by Sanjeev Duggal, CEO & Executive Director, Centum Learning Ltd
Improved economic conditions have fueled unprecedented telecom growth in Africa. It is estimated that by 2016 the continent will have a billion mobile phones. According to a World Bank report, nearly 16% of adults and 31% of those with a formal bank account in Sub-Saharan Africa have reported using a mobile phone to pay bills or send / receive money in the last 12 months.
Africa’s status as being the second most mobile connected continent where about 15% of its billion inhabitants own a cell phone has ushered many African nations into a digital economy and changed lives of people for the better. The telecom revolution has touched people through better access to education and entertainment, helped in disaster management and better agricultural yields and brought people together through social media.
Guest post by the Global Certification Forum
The extension of mobile phone and broadband services across the globe has been built on our industry’s adoption of global standards. Verifying that new devices conform to those standards is of great importance to manufacturers and operator alike. As devices become more complex with the overlaying of new mobile technologies on legacy standards, there could be a danger that pre-launch testing becomes so cumbersome that the full economies of scale from standards can’t be realised.
That’s where GCF Certification comes into play. Developed and maintained through the collaboration of experts from manufacturers, operators and the test industry, GCF Certification has become the global baseline for assessing interoperability between mobile devices and operators’ networks and services. Certification brings economies of scale to device testing.
Guest post written by Ilia Abramov, Product Director @ Xura
Ilia Abramov, Product Director, Xura
Signaling networks, enabling the exchange of information that sets up, controls and terminates calls, have been through multiple stages of evolution since the early days of telephony.
Signaling System No. 7, or SS7, was developed to exchange information over digital signaling networks specific to mobile operators, and requires specialised equipment to fulfil even simple connectivity.
The complexity of its protocols, and the fact that it is used only by a closed circle of mobile operators, means that SS7 offers very controlled access to the networks themselves. That said, it’s worth bearing in mind that an SS7 network contains crucial information regarding a mobile network such as subscriber data, and mobility and authorisation information.
SS7 networks have since evolved to become IP-based, making them more accessible to a wider community outside of traditional mobile operators. But, with the emergence of cheaper, and better performing IP solutions, the level of trust has dropped significantly.
Exclusive interview with Paul Gowans, Mobility Marketing Manager at Viavi
Paul Gowans, Mobility Marketing Manager at Viavi
Viavi Solutions (formerly JDSU, Arieso and Network Instruments) is very active in LTE and helping to advance the technology … how has LTE progressed since last year?
LTE as a standard continues to evolve to meet the growing capacity and coverage demands of mobile consumers. With LTE Advanced and LTE Broadcast being two examples. Yet it is the area of VoLTE which has probably seen the greatest change from last year. At the event last year many operators were planning their VoLTE roll-out and engaging their technology partners such as Viavi on the challenges to address and ensure they deliver on the high expectations of VoLTE. Now, we have many operators who have either deployed or are very close to deploying. There is also the area of the relevance of voice today – many people of course have an iPhone or other Smartphone and use a multitude of methods to communicate – certain generations don’t talk at all! So, the industry has had to appreciate that VoLTE needs to be integrated into the way people communicate today.
What are the top VoLTE challenges?
Working closely with our mobile operator customers and building on our experience with IP based voice services as well as RAN and Core network challenges I would say the top three challenges are:
- Voice Quality – measuring end-to-end (E2E) voice quality is fundamental to understanding the customers quality of experience (QoE). Knowing what metrics are important, where to measure and quickly finding the root cause of voice quality affecting issues.
- Handovers – when you move out of an LTE service area and have an active VoLTE call, the user will want to continue with that call. SRVCC seamlessly maintains calls when a mobile user moves from LTE to non-LTE coverage areas. Of course, there is the potential for things to go wrong and calls to get dropped. Also, if the user is not supporting VoLTE but is using LTE, when they receive a call the phone the network need to fall back (CSFB) so that both data and voice are non-LTE.
- Location – not only knowing what service is being provided to the consumer but also from where so that you can determine, for example, VoLTE hot spots – that is where there may be too many dropped calls or handovers have failed. By accurately geo-locating voice quality metrics you can make better business decisions on service delivery.
Presentation theme/message at the event?
In addition to introducing Viavi Solutions to the audience, Viavi will be presenting in 3 key areas, namely: VoLTE, HetNets and Network Optimization. The theme of the VoLTE presentation is how to address some of the key VoLTE challenges and ensure the subscribers gets an exceptional VoLTE service. We will be exploring voice quality- passive measuring, active measuring – how integrating handset data with core data and then geo-locate that information to maximize the business impact of the service. The E2E view of the service from device to RAN to backhaul and core. For HetNets we will be discussing workforce automation and how to ensure cell site turn up to be most cost-effective without impacting quality. Network Optimization will build on the extreme non-uniformity in cellular networks and how subscriber-based, location-aware predictive optimization is needed.
Meet Paul and the Viavi team at the upcoming LTE North America, in Dallas, next November 17th-19th!
Kevin Linehan, Vice President, Chief Technology Officer
The roll-out of any new generation of mobile network technology is never as simple as flicking a switch. Much of the current discussion around 5G is about its definition. But 5G won’t truly happen until it can actually happen in the network. Like all grand designs, obstacles need to be overcome in order to achieve that goal.
Like other industry commentators, my fundamental viewpoint is that 5G will be a “network of networks.” Network densification involving macro sites, in-building wireless, metro cells and small cells will continue on the way to 5G. This densification adds more complexity to wireless networks and demands ever more sophisticated infrastructure solutions. Managing these multiple network layers efficiently is becoming ever more important to deliver 5G speeds and throughput.
This guest post was written by Elhum Vahdat, Executive Vice President, APEX Communications
Services, Services, Services… you can practically hear the cry of Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) all over the world pleading for new (or even old) services that can run on their shiny new LTE networks. Of course, this is nothing new, as this repeated cry for services is generated with the roll-out of every new generation of network (e.g. 2G, 3G), because MNOs are well aware that the serious payoff comes primarily from running new services, which in turn can justify their investment.
Keep in mind, in this blog I won’t address what over-the-top (OTT) services are doing to the bottom line of MNOs, which goes without saying is why new services offered by the MNOs are so critical.
One service that is ideal for LTE is Visual Interactive Voice Response, or Visual IVR (different than Video IVR). At this point I know what a lot of you are thinking… IVR is dead, so why resuscitate it for a new network? My short answer is that Visual IVR is not your parent’s IVR.