This is Part II of Peter Nas’ blog post on local break out technology
Peter Nas serves as Senior Solution Architect at F5 Networks and draws from more than 20 years of telecom experience to advise operators how to leverage Diameter signaling solutions to enable the optimal LTE experience. Peter joined F5 with the company’s acquisition of Traffix where he was responsible for global business development. Prior to joining Traffix, he worked at Tekelec focusing on market development for Diameter and SIP routing. In his days before Tekelec, he served as Core Network Engineering Manager at a prominent mobile operator in the Netherlands.
In my last blog post, I began looking at the slow progress for the deployment of LBO (local breakout) technology that will reduce mobile roaming revenues. In this post, I will suggest various ways to leverage LBO to offset the reduction in roaming revenues.
One interesting aspect of LBO is that the signaling for two additional Diameter interfaces, S9 for policy and Gy for charging, could be exchanged between visited and home networks, and if so, this will be done via an IPX network as per GSMA guidelines (IR.88). There are different views on whether or not using the S9 interface to exchange policy information between the visited PCRF and home PCRF, will be massively used once LBO is offered, but let’s assume it will be used. In this case, an IPX carrier can offer various services around Diameter interworking, security and perhaps also screening, overload control, prioritization and potentially adapting policy rules and more.
This post is by Peter Nas, Senior Solution Architect, F5 Networks
Peter Nas, Senior Solution Architect, F5 Networks
For over ten years, the technology to offer local breakout (commonly known as LBO) has existed, allowing data use by roaming customers to be supported by the visited operator’s network. This is in contrast to the scenario in which data requests are sent back to the roamer’s home network, which of course, results in higher costs. However, despite the obvious fact that many people would like to get lower data roaming rates, a wish not limited to Europeans traveling in the EU, sadly it is not offered yet.
Christian Menini, Project Director Wireless and LTE, Swisscom
Christian Menini, Project Director Wireless and LTE, Swisscom is giving a real life case study about Swisssom’s LTE deployment on Day One of the LTE Voice Summit, taking place on October 7th-8th 2014 at the Royal Garden Hotel, London.
What are you expecting and hoping for from the commercial launch on VoLTE?
The commercial launch of VoLTE, which we are aiming for next year at Swisscom as well, really does have the potential to get the ball rolling. With VoLTE, the MNP are completing the technological change that will enable them to further develop mobile voice communication, as one of their most important assets, and reposition it.
I believe the good old “voice service” may experience a small “renaissance”. Over the past few years voice has been forced into the background by all of the new communication forms. But I’m convinced: Voice is not only noise.
As we approach commercial launch is there any clearer idea of whether VoLTE will truly compete or will it just complement OTT services?
Philippe Lucas, SVP Standardisation and Ecosystems Development, Orange
Philippe Lucas, SVP Standardisation and Ecosystems Development, Orange is speaking on Day One of of the 2nd annual LTE Voice Summit, taking place on October 7th-8th 2014 at the Royal Garden Hotel, London.
What are you expecting and hoping for from the commercial launch on VoLTE?
I’m expecting a rapid take-off and a large terminal offering. Our intent is that VoLTE will drive adoption of enriched communication services. Therefore operators will have to quickly move to all-IP so that we can collectively provide a universal interoperable service offering with much richer capabilities that before, e.g. messaging, video etc.
As we approach commercial launch is there any clearer idea of whether VoLTE will truly compete or just complement OTT services?
Maria Cuevas, Head of Core Mobile Networks Research, BT
Maria Cuevas, Head of Core Mobile Networks Research, BT is taking part in a panel discussion on Day Two of the 2nd annual LTE Voice Summit, taking place on October 7th-8th 2014 at the Royal Garden Hotel, London.
In this interview she presents some of her personal views on VoLTE – please note, these do not reflect the official views of BT.
As we approach commercial launch of VoLTE services in the IUK is there any clearer idea of whether VoLTE will truly compete or just complement OTT services?
My personal view is that VoLTE will be positioned and seen by the customers as an enhanced primary voice service and therefore will continue to be the main choice for of reliable voice communications for customers, complemented by OTT voice for certain scenarios. (more…)
Torbjorn Pettersson, Technical Sales Manager, Mobile Services, Telenor, Sweden
This post is byTorbjörn A Pettersson, Manager Technical Sales and IPX Solutions
Telenor Global ServicesOver the past few years I have experienced a number of examples where customers have experienced “bill shock” after returning home from travelling abroad. The good news in Europe is that since July this year additional EU regulations have made data roaming more affordable, and this is a trend that is about to go global.
What is the catalyst for this new trend? There are so many data-hungry apps on smartphones and tablets being used by people of all ages. In a workshop during the last LTE World Summit in Amsterdam several operators gave similar observations from different segments—not only SME customers. This means that data retail prices are bundled (daily or weekly bundling for example), which make the data roaming much cheaper, and at the same time increase the operators roaming data revenues worldwide.
Rémi Thomas, Director of the LTE EPC Programme, Orange Group
Rémi Thomas, Director of the LTE EPC Programme, Orange is speaking at the LTE World Summit on roaming challenges at the LTE World Summit, the premier 4G event for the telecoms industry, taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands.
You’re speaking on roaming issues. What are the main challenges to bringing making LTE roaming a reality?
Orange has launched 4G roaming for data services since February this year for customers in France travelling to the UK, Spain, Portugal and South Korea. Further to this, technical readiness to deliver 4G roaming has been achieved in a further five markets including the UK (through EE), Spain, Romania, Portugal and Moldova. We anticipate 4G roaming will be fully available across Orange’s European footprint by the end of 2014, including major destinations outside of Europe.
The primary challenge for all operators however has been the mastering of new protocols because this requires complete testing. There are complexities to do with diameter signalling, especially internationally, and Orange is paying special attention to this. It is also being addressed by mobile operators via the GSMA and is on the agenda of the i3Forum as far as the carrier community is concerned.
Today CSFB is used to provide voice services to LTE roamers. As a consequence the voice services for LTE roamers rely on the present 2G/3G roaming agreements. In order to improve the voice experience (lowering setup delay, additional services), Voice over LTE (VoLTE) technology will be deployed in our networks. Then the next challenge will be the deployment of roaming for VoLTE.
Frédéric Ruciak, EVP of strategy for Bouygues Telecom
The LTE World Summit is the premier 4G event for the telecoms industry and is taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands. Frédéric Ruciak, EVP of strategy for Bouygues Telecom will be speaking on a panel dedicated to maximizing revenue from LTE, taking place on one of the conference.
To what extent have you virtualised your network and how important will NFV be in the future?
We have not yet implemented NFV in our network but we think it may be an opportunity in the future. The main benefits will be to reduce costs in our core network and to improve time to market. We think robust and powerful solutions may go live within a three- to five-year timeframe. We’ll be cautious in terms of operations and QoS, because we may potentially move from single vendor platforms, with clear commitment, to layered environments, where we may have interoperability issues and multiple responsibilities.
Yousef Abu-Mutawe , CTO, Zain, Jordan
As Zain in Jordan prepares to launch LTE, its CTO Yousef Abu-Mutawe is already considering the impact that 5G will have in the future. To hear more from Abu-Mutawe be sure to attend the LTE World Summit, the premier 4G event for the telecoms industry, taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands. At the conference he will be speaking in a keynote panel session discussing the path to 5G on Day One of the conference.
Zain is launching LTE later this year. What have been the main challenges leading up to this?
Growing the data network is a necessity in order to maintain revenues. Maintaining the value of the company require us to move to LTE. While voice revenues are shrinking, demand for data is increasing. In fact, data is becoming the main selling point and customer retention factor. Additionally, there is the need to eliminate infrastructure bottlenecks to ensure massive capacity and massive connectivity.
Mobile apps are making a huge difference to the fortunes of Telecom Italia says Sergio Cozzolino, VP Marketing Mobile Services Development of the Italian operator in this interview ahead of the LTE World Summit, taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands. To hear more from him come to on Day Two of the event where he is speaking on the subject, “Examining the Mobile App opportunities and Cloud Solutions”
How would you summarise what have you learned about the power of cloud apps for generating revenue for operators?
Mobile apps are really a disruptive phenomenon in the Internet world. They are growing so fast and are so pervasive in both business and consumers fields. The growing number of apps available on all the different app stores and the increasing number of downloads is not comparable with any other digital good—music, books, films. This enabler is facilitating access to content in the cloud, and they are boosting mobility and the increased consumption of data. LTE is completing the scenario as mobile broadband is guaranteeing access to content with the same level of reliability as fixed networks.
Paul Ceely, head of network strategy, EE
Want to find out more about what comes after 4G? Paul Ceely, head of network strategy at EE is speaking on the subject of evolving beyond LTE on Day One of the 10th annual LTE World Summit, the premier 4G event for the telecoms industry, taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands. In this interview we find out his views on the impact new technology such as NFV will make and how the carrier plans to maintain its 4G leadership.
Do you feel any pressure for EE to be leaders in terms of network technology?
Our ambition and vision is to build the best network and best service so our customers trust us with their digital lives. And to this end we see network technology and more specifically LTE and LTE-A as a way to maintain network leadership. Technology is evolving increasingly quickly, both on the user device side and the network, and so to maintain network leadership we must maintain technology leadership.
Kerstin Günther is SVP Technology Europe for Deutsche Telekom.
Kerstin Günther is SVP Technology Europe for Deutsche Telekom. To hear her deliver more insights, come to the LTE World Summit, which is taking place on the 23 – 25 June 2014, at the RAI, Amsterdam. Hear her take part in a panel discussion with other leading CTOs discussing network innovations such as NFV and 5G.
What sort of changes have you seen on the network in terms of usage since you launched LTE?
When LTE networks were initially launched, the main target was to provide higher data throughput compared to HSPA+. At that point, initial bit rates were 75Mbps on the downlink with 10MHz channel spacing. Gradually, LTE networks have been upgraded to LTE+ providing 150Mbps downlink bit-rates, while last year we have seen the first introduction of carrier aggregation technologies with maximum downlink bitrates around 300Mbps and this year DTAG Group demonstrated in a live environment the introduction of 600Mbps downlink over-the-air achieving 580Mbps downlink bit-rate. Of course, the relevant terminal evolution is essential for the end-user to take advantage of this enhanced throughput.
What are the next steps you are focusing on in terms of network development and what impact will these steps have on your customers?
Robindhra Mangtani, Principal Advisor- Mobile, Strategy & Technology Group, Ofcom, UK
To hear first-hand about overcoming spectrum challenges, come and hear Robindhra Mangtani, Principal Advisor- Mobile, Strategy & Technology Group, Ofcom, UK, who is taking part in a panel discussion on the subject on Day Two of the LTE World Summit, the premier 4G event for the telecoms industry, is taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands.
What are the main practical challenges of making effective use of shared -spectrum?
The benefits of spectrum sharing have in the past been constrained by the difficulty associated with managing interference between services, which can limit the overall range and quality of service that can be achieved. Technology developments will include the use of databases and cognitive sensing to help devices decide which frequencies and time slots to use, based on a better understanding of how other are using the same spectrum band in their location. These approaches have the potential to improve the quality of service that can be provided by the different services sharing spectrum and are sometimes collectively referred to as Dynamic Spectrum Access (DSA) technologies.
Senior IP Transmission Manager, Mobinnet, Iran
Mobinnet, Iran’s countries only national broadband operator, has started the pilot phase of its TD-LTE deployment. Come and hear more from Ali Tahmasebi, its Transmission Senior Manager, who is speaking on how Mobinnet is handling the coming data explosion on Day Two of the 10th annual LTE World Summit, taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands.
Please give us an overview of what stage your LTE deployment is at?
Mobinnet Telecom Co. (MTC) is the only nationwide wireless broadband (4G-WiMAX) operator in the country with services ranging from broadband internet access, VoIP, and VPN. The company is the largest WiMAX Operator in the Middle East. While we at Mobinnet are planning to upgrade the network to new technology, at the same time we are expanding the existing network to cover new locations and add new capacity to congested areas.
Regarding the future broadband experience for Mobinnet’s customers, a peer review of subscriber demand and an analysis of global deployment of LTE led us to select TD-LTE technology. We have finalised all the technical considerations for both LTE and the EPC domain. Most of the jobs in the network planning domain is done and we have started the pilot phase.
Vitor Pereira is a Portuguese-based journalist and blogger with a focus on smart cities.
Vitor Pereira, a journalist and blogger, takes a look at how mobile broadband is helping solve traditional connectivity problems in rural Portugal.
For decades, the remote and less populated regions of the most varied parts of the world have tried to keep pace with the spread of Broadband and high speed Internet. These naturally, first arrived in the big cities and most populated regions for several reasons. Firstly, and essentially, due to the business models of major telecommunications operators and, secondly, due to the lack of serious public policies promoting the development of infrastructure for areas of low population density.
In other words, for companies operating in an open, free and competitive market it is a matter of numbers and economic viability (or the lack thereof) and objectively we can all understand this.
Dr. Mustafa Aykut, International Affairs and Policy Coordinator for Türk Telekom
Turkey has yet to roll out LTE as it awaits spectrum allocation. Dr. Mustafa Aykut, International Affairs and Policy Coordinator for Türk Telekom talks us through some of the complex issues and explains his objections to the EU banning roaming charges.
Dr. Aykut, is taking part in a panel discussion entitled: “Assessing successful and innovative deployment strategies”, taking place on Day Two of the LTE World Summit, the premier 4G event for the telecoms industry, taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands.
What are the main challenges of rolling out LTE in Turkey?
Currently, there is no roadmap regarding spectrum related actions for LTE roll-out as 800 MHz band will not be cleared until June 2015. Furthermore, problems associated with the unfair allocation of GSM bands continue to have an impact. The fair allocation of existing bands is a prerequisite for LTE launch and technology-neutral use of spectrum.
Internet security is an issue that is always high on the agenda. Do you think that operators should be doing more to protect their customers?
In Turkey, all ISPs operate in accordance with the regulations set by the regulation authority, ICTA, with regards to internet security related issues. However, it is important for operators to raise awareness among users about internet security to ensure the safety of their customers and their information.
Nemanja Ognjanovic, manager of network and services planning department, Telekom Srbija
LTE might be mature as a technology but it’s still yet to be deployed in many networks. We speak to Nemanja Ognjanovic, manager of network and services planning department, Telekom Srbija about the challenges that remain for operators looking to deploy. Ognjanovic is one of the discussion leaders of the Service Innovation track for Voice, Video and Roaming at the Operator Mindshare, taking place on the 23rd June at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands.
At what stage are your LTE deployment plans and what are the key challenges that you expect to face?
LTE is not deployed by any operator in Serbia yet, but Telekom Srbija is committed to implement it as soon as all the technical and regulatory requirements are met. The network has already been in the process of modernization towards LTE for several years through the introduction of “single RAN” base station cabinets that allow for the co-location of 2G/3G/4G equipment in the same cabinet. Furthermore, the upgrade of core network and necessary backhaul links to meet traffic requirements is ongoing, while waiting for regulatory issues to be solved.
In general, the key challenge for LTE implementation is not on the technical side, but on the commercial side, since the required significant investment cannot be easily monetized through service subscription and mobile data plans. The technical deployment should be followed by a proper marketing campaign aimed at attracting subscribers and creating of relevant LTE customer database.
Kamran Etemad, Senior advisor, FCC
Kamran Etemad, Senior advisor, FCC is speaking at the inaugural 5G World Summit, taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands. Here we find out about his views on making the best use of spectrum and the challenges and opportunities therein.
Unlicensed LTE: surely a contradiction in terms? How does this work and how what problems could it solve?
LTE-U is not a contradiction but a different way of using a technology that is primarily designed to be controlled/managed, in order to leverage the significant amount of unlicensed spectrum, to address exploding demand for mobile data capacity. Depending on how the solution is approached the added complexity may be limited, or large.
Perhaps the simplest and least intrusive way to allow LTE-U operation is to use it as a supplementary carrier to opportunistically expand the effective user plane bandwidth of a licensed primary LTE carrier, which may more predictably carry control plane signaling. The LTE-U supplementary carrier may be configured/activated dynamically through primary carrier for use as a downlink only, uplink only and TDD mode, in an unlicensed or shared spectrum. Some companies are proposing concepts aligned with this approach, while some may be considering a more Wi-Fi-like operation, which requires more changes.
Philip Sorrells, vice president of strategic marketing, Wireless, CommScope
Wireless networks today are facing a massive capacity crunch. With a data hungry mobile society and its love for bandwidth-hungry applications, networks are constantly under pressure and struggling to keep pace, especially in LTE environments.
An effective way to solve the capacity problem is through sector sculpting. It is an ingenious approach to antenna pattern shaping that enables operators to carve out more capacity, improve coverage and limit interference.
Roman Lapszow, Senior Project Manager, Technical Strategy, Radio Networks and Microwaves, Orange Group
Roman Lapszow, Senior Project Manager, Technical Strategy, Radio Networks and Microwaves, Orange Group is speaking on Day Two of the LTE MENA conference, taking place on the 11th-13th May 2014 at the at the Conrad, Dubai, UAE. Ahead of the show we speak to him about where the Orange network is heading in 2014 and where the focus is for upcoming developments.
How much impact will LTE-Advanced have on Orange’s networks in 2014?
The launch of LTE networks has brought a significant growth of data traffic and consumer interest. LTE is driving evolution in our networks and there is no doubt of the value of LTE. The only remaining question in markets where we have yet to launch is when and in what bands. As LTE-A is concerned, the majority of our efforts are focused on studies, evaluations and deployment of LTE-A. The major drivers for 2014 are carrier aggregation, the flagship feature of LTE-A, and to a lower extent coordinated multipoint processing (CoMP).
Check out our preview video for the LTE World Summit 2014 from the halls of this year’s Mobile World Congress.
In this video we hear from:
- Sub10 Systems
- Genesis Technical Systems
Conference Researcher, LTE World Series,
Informa Telecoms & Media
Operators that leverage the power of data analytics have a chance to uncover hidden revenue opportunities.
With a phone in almost every person’s pocket, it’s no surprise that mobile operators have access to huge amounts of subscriber data. Rather than just sitting on it though, thanks to the power of data analytics operators can uncover important insights into consumer behaviour. These insights can then be turned into targeted monetization opportunities and new revenue streams for operators.
For example, operators can analyse the data to find out the more about the services consumers are using, such as discovering the most popular OTT services, how they are using them, and by whom? They can assess how consumer trends vary from device to device, accurately predict the services individuals are most likely to pay more for and then offer these premium services to consumers. They can also track new service rollouts and monitor consumer experience to make services even more successful.
Ohad Ramot, Principal Software Engineer, F5
F5’s Ohad Ramot explains the challenges of translating signals between a 4G network using Diameter signaling and 3G networks using legacy SS7.
It’s widely known that LTE (4G) networks are spreading rapidly and are being deployed all over the globe. However, while 4G networks are growing, 2G/3G networks still serve most of the subscribers as they have been doing successfully for the last decades, and it seems these legacy networks are here to stay for a while. This requires operators and roaming mediators (IPX) to face the challenge of maintaining and interacting with both network architectures in parallel.
4G and 2G/3G network architectures differ in many aspects. One of the major differences is the signals mechanism that enables network nodes to interact with each other for authentication, billing, subscriber profile provisioning and more. While 2G/3G signaling mechanism is based on SS7 protocol stack, 4G networks use the relatively modern Diameter protocol on top of TCP/SCTP/IP stacks. Although both signaling methods provide solution to the same set of problems, they stem from different architectures and design philosophies.
This post is by Robert Morrison, Director, Product Management, CSG Internationa
On my last trip to Brazil I was surprised when my taxi driver fired up Waze to beat the Sao Paulo traffic and I immediately downloaded it to do the same for me in London’s heavy congestion. He proved to me that consumers there have developed an unquenchable thirst—like they have in every country—for fast mobile data speeds and services. CSPs in Brazil are working hard to satisfy that demand by rolling out 4G data services over LTE networks. And frankly they seem a long way ahead of the mobile data service that I experience at home. On a recent two-hour train journey across the UK from the capital to Bristol—a major population centre—the best my provider could do was GPRS and iffy 3G at the stations. GPRS is not very helpful with today’s bandwidth-hungry apps using pictures and video. Believe me, having to constantly refresh apps can result in very sore thumbs!
HTC unveiled its latest flagship phone at the Olympia in London at an event tonight that in terms of scale was reminiscent of Apple’s best handset launches. The AV presentation was certainly big, bold and brash, though with the best will in the world, HTC’s execs do not have quite the same flair as Apple’s.
It has less to worry about with the handset itself though – the HTC One M8, is a fine device. HTC clearly has an obsession with metal and its global head of design Scott Croyle boasted that 90 per cent of the handset consisted a a unibody metal construction, up from 70 per cent on last year’s HTC One M7. The finish is certainly polished and refined, and very premium in feel. This makes it slightly ironic that the case that HTC is touting covers all of that up.