Tropo, an API that makes it simple to build phone, SMS and Instant messaging applications was picked as the winner of the Innovation Accelerator at the recent LTE Asia conference. In this interview with Fuxin Jiao-Kiuru, APAC General Manager for Tropo, we find out what the award means to them and why API development is so important in the telecoms space.
You won the Innovation Accelerator at LTE Asia. Why do you think your product attracted the attention of the judges?
Tropo bridges the gaps between telco and web development spaces, making fast innovation in communication possible. I believe the reason we won is that we are not only talking about great technology, but also real customers, real applications in the market, and real innovation and we bring in great value. In the region, both China Telecom and Globe Philippines are already using Tropo with their eco-system partners. So we are not just talking about it, we are innovating with our customers and partners as we speak.
What are the main challenges you expect to face over the next 12-18 months?
Malcolm Chan, Managing Director, BICS, Asia-Pacific
This post is by Malcolm Chan, Managing Director, BICS, Asia-Pacific.
Asia is expected to account for almost half (forty-seven per cent) of all LTE connections by 2017, as LTE networks are rolled out in major markets such as China and India, making Asia-Pacific the world’s largest LTE market in terms of service revenue. In the face of this tremendous growth, operators need to seek innovation through Next Generation Communication Services to maintain market share and customer loyalty.
To achieve this, operators need to ensure they provide an enhanced user experience. Central to this is an enriched communication experience with IMS based services like VoLTE and Rich Communications Services (RCS).
As OTT players increase the number of VoIP and messaging services they offer their customers globally, mobile operators need to deploy VoLTE and RCS services in order to offer innovative high quality services through their unique proposition of ubiquity, global reach, quality and privacy management.
Andy Huckridge, our Director of Service Provider Solutions
This post is by Andy Huckridge, Director of Service Provider Solutions, Gigamon
Operators are facing a slew of new technologies to roll out, but this time around there’s a difference. In the past operators have been able to deploy new technologies in series, that is one after another. With the current new technologies, due to the interdependency on each other, they are linked.
Therefore instead of deploying the new technologies in series, the deployment of one new technology forces the deployment of another new technology, and so on until all three new technologies are deployed. This bog post will explain the three technologies, the interdependencies between them, highlight why this is bad from the operators perspective and explore ways to overcome the resource crunch which will become evident by the deployment of a Unified Tool Rail approach in parallel with the new technology rollouts.
Andrew Mackay, Manager Mobile Solutions, Cisco Systems
This post is by Andrew Mackay, Manager Mobile Solutions, Cisco Systems
In my last post Bringing LTE Indoors, I discussed the compelling need to address LTE coverage indoors to enable service migration off 3G, particularly for Voice. We know there is a variety of options for MNOs to address indoor coverage, either from outside in with more outdoor sites, or from inside with wider use of Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS), repeaters or small cells. The “outdoor in” approach would mean even more BTS sites, but site acquisition challenges and build costs generally mean this is no longer an option in urban areas. Addressing coverage from indoors makes sense, but what is the optimal solution?
Yaacov Cohen, Director of Product Management, Cellwize
This post is by Yaacov Cohen, Director of Product Management, Cellwize
Closed-loop SON is an attribute that the majority of mobile operators desire from a SON solution today. But is their expectation of closed-loop SON the same as what vendors truly offer, or is it missing a critical aspect?
A Closed-loop SON system would have the ability to automatically receive parameter network sets, run optimisations and then provision parameter set adjustments back onto the network – automatically and faultlessly. This loop part of a C-SON integration with vendor OSS, is the basic foundation of any C-SON solution ensuring the automation of coordinated SON activities.
But does this truly define what Closed-loop SON is?
The true meaning of closed-loop SON is actually much broader. It isn’t just the configured connections that allow for the closed-loop data transfers, but rather a wider network-centric approach, which continuously seeks for anomalies in network performance. Closed-loop SON can only be completed when realising corrective C-SON techniques, which consider the current level of network performance degradation, while comparing normal traffic pattern behaviors.
Itsuma Tanaka, Lead Core Network Architect, Core Network Development Department, NTT Docomo
Itsuma Tanaka, Lead Core Network Architect, Core Network Development Department, NTT Docomo is speaking on the subject of “5G Infrastructure”, on Day One of the 9th annual LTE Asia conference, taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore. Here we get insight into his views on 5G, the IoT, and LTE roaming.
What, in your opinion, will truly define 5G?
5G is the search for a new paradigm; one that will support society for another 20 years. Therefore, 5G will be defined by the new business architecture on top of technical advancements to maximize the potential of mobile radio communication.
Will 5G require an overhaul of current network architectures, or will it be an evolution?
Roman Waditschatka, International Product Manager for Mobile Solutions, A1 Telekom Austria is speaking on the topic of “Creating a consistent customer experience when roaming,” taking place on Day Two of the 9th annual LTE Asia conference, taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore. Here he gives us his views on why IPX is so important for the modern network operator.
LTE roaming is starting to become a reality – what are the main challenges to making it happen?
The main challenge is having a reliable IPX provider with a flexible core network infrastructure to interconnect MNOs that can tailor itself to their needs. Telekom Austria Group’s global IPX network guarantees our customers global LTE roaming coverage by exchanging traffic with their roaming partner networks worldwide.
To what extent does having a wholesale business with knowledge of signalling issues help solve roaming challenges?
Yuen Kuan Moon, CEO, Consumer Singapore, SingTel
Yuen Kuan Moon the CEO of Consumer Singapore, SingTel is delivering one of the opening day keynotes at the 9th annual LTE Asia conference, taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore. He here reveals how Singtel looks to work with OTT players, and make the best use of the bandwidth it has available.
What are your broader challenges that you expect to face over the next five years?
Communications service providers will have to meet ever increasing customer expectations, especially in terms of offering products and services that are relevant to customers’ needs and which they value. We also have to continuously innovate and maintain an always-connected, reliable network.
Singapore is not short of bandwidth compared to many countries. What is the plan to monetize it all?
Dr. Henry Wong is head of Strategic Wireless Technology and Core Network at Hong Kong Telecommunications (HK) Limited
Dr. Henry Wong is head of Strategic Wireless Technology and Core Network at Hong Kong Telecommunications (HK) Limited. Here we find out more about how HKT’s network innovations have brought it to the attention of the judges of the LTE Asia Awards, taking place at the Marina Bay Sands on the 24th September.
You’ve been nominated at the inaugural LTE Asia awards? Why do you think your product attracted the attention of the judges?
Well firstly, being the first operator to launch VoLTE in Kong Kong and the world’s first commercial deployment of the 3GPP R10 eSRVCC technology is a remarkable achievement. However, the main attractions of our service lie in the way we have engineered it and make it different from other deployments so that we can deliver a fully transparent and improved experience for our customer. Key aspects are:
Jin-Hyo Park, SVP, Head of Network R&D Center, SK Telecom
Jin-Hyo Park, SVP, Head of Network R&D Center, SK Telecom is delivering a keynote speech on SK Telecoms LTE Advanced innovations on Day One of the 9th annual LTE Asia conference, taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore. Here he gives us an overview of SK Telekom’s latest innovation on its cutting-edge LTE network.
What was the original thinking behind the creation of your winning entry?
SK Telecom’s LTE and LTE-Advanced subscribers have already surpassed 55 per cent of the company’s total subscriber base, and the company holds more than 47 per cent of market share for LTE and LTE-Advanced market in Korea. To provide more advanced and faster LTE services to customers, SK Telecom has continuously upgraded its LTE and LTE-Advanced networks by commercializing carrier aggregation technology, adding more frequency channels, and expanding network coverage.
How do you plan to improve it even further?
Ms Aileen Chia, Assistant Chief Executive and Deputy Director General (Telecoms and Post), IDA
Ms Aileen Chia, Assistant Chief Executive and Deputy Director General (Telecoms and Post), IDA is delivering the opening keynote on Day One of the 9th annual LTE Asia conference, taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore. Here she gives us an overview into the work of the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) and how it is helping take Singapore on its ‘smart city’ journey.
What are the primary opportunities and challenges for your region over the next three years?
The Asia Pacific region accounts for over 50% of the world’s mobile subscribers, with mobile penetration expected to reach 89% by the end of 2014. Fuelled by increasingly affordable smart devices, the rate of adoption of mobile broadband is increasing alongside with mobile penetration as networks are being upgraded to next generation platforms. Additionally, 44% of global fixed broadband subscriptions are from the Asia Pacific with some Asian countries such as Singapore having introduced high speed broadband network such as fibre broadband. These indicate that there are both opportunities and challenges in the region, as there is a large and still-growing data-hungry consumer base.
Amit Bhayani, Co-Founder, Telestax
Amit Bhayani, Co-Founder, Telestax is taking part in the Innovation Accelerator, showcasing developers of interesting start-ups before a panel of judges, taking place at the 9th annual LTE Asia conference on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore. Read on to find out more about Telestax and Bhayani vision of where WebRTC fits in to the telco eco-system and why cloud is the future.
Please give me a brief overview of Telestax and what makes it unique?
TeleStax provides open source communications software and services that facilitate the shift from legacy SS7 based IN networks to IP based LTE and IMS networks hosted on private (on-premise), hybrid or public clouds. TeleStax products include Restcomm, WebRTC services ,SMSC Gateway, USSD Gateway, JSLEE, SS7 Resource Adaptors, SIP Servlets, Rich Multimedia Services, Presence Services/RCS, Diameter/AAA Services, XMPP Services and others.
Here at the LTE World Series we have received a huge array of entries for the inaugural LTE Asia Awards, with submissions impressing our panel of expert judges with their innovation, hard-work and commitment to LTE.
Our analyst-led panel of judges have made their final decisions and the awards shortlist can be seen below. The winners will be announced on the first evening of this year’s LTE Asia event on the 24th September at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore.
Abdus Samad, Assistant Manager, Radio Network Design and Performance, for Augere Wireless Broadband/Qubee
Abdus Samad, Assistant Manager, Radio Network Design and Performance, for Augere Wireless Broadband/Qubee, is taking part in the Operator Mindshare taking place on Day Two of the LTE Asia conference, on the 23-25 September, at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore. Here we found out more about the strategy around the transition from WiMAX to LTE.
What is your mission and what are the main challenges you are facing in delivering wireless broadband?
Our mission is to provide affordable broadband to all, so that they can experience the best of the Internet. We have been operating using WiMAX technology for more than five years and are currently in the planning stages for transition to TD-LTE. Our aim is to provide high-speed broadband service to end users no matter what technologies we are using.
Air interface management is always challenging, especially when the frequency band is above 2GHz. Then deep indoor seamless coverage becomes one of the major challenges. Other than that, end user demand for high volume content has increased significantly in last few years. With limited wireless resources, capacity management is a vital point for us. Development of LTE is now real and there are numerous live networks around the world, we expect we will be able to meet the user demand with LTE deployment.
How has the TD-LTE eco-system progressed over the last 12 months and what are your expectations for the next couple of years?
Faisal Mobarak, Asst. General Manager, Network Operations Center, Ollo Wireless Internet
Faisal Mobarak, Asst. General Manager, Network Operations Center, Ollo Wireless Internet is speaking on Day Two of the 9th annual LTE Asia conference, taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.
What are the broad challenges that you expect to face over the next five years?
For developing country like Bangladesh, the key challenge is to make LTE a profitable business case for the operators. In Bangladesh, we still have very low Internet usage and the use of data is just not up to the mark, mostly due to lack of local content and overpriced Internet bandwidth at consumer level. Therefore, the challenge is more on socio-economic part rather than technical.
What is your strategy for increasing consumer uptake of LTE services?
Sun Tae Kim, EVP Corp R&D, LG U+
LG U+ believes South Korea’s market leading network status derives from the cutting-edge handsets present in the market. In this interview he details the plans for bringing further enhancements and speeds to the network over the next couple of years. To hear more about LGU+’s strategy you can hear Sun Tae Kim, EVP/Director of SD, LG U+, speak on Day Two of the 9th annual LTE Asia conference taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.
Operators in South Korea seem more willing and able to invest in next-gen technologies earlier than many Western operators? Why do you think this is so?
South Korea has the world-leading manufacturers of smart devices – such as Samsung and LG – and implemented nationwide LTE network sporting the best quality and functionality. But mobile subscribers have been already saturated. The Korean operators, SKT, KT, and LGU+, could not survive in the market just with existing technology and can only beat the competition with new technologies and services. As a result, South Korea has become the world test-bed for next generation technologies.
Following on from that would you say South Korean customers are more willing to try, and pay for, new mobile services?
Santosh Payal, Manager for Mobile Data and Broadband Services for Vodafone Fiji Limited
Santosh Payal, Manager for Mobile Data and Broadband Services for Vodafone Fiji Limited will be discussing optimal LTE pricing in his presentation on Day Two of the 9th annual LTE Asia conference taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.
Are billing systems keeping pace with changes in how MNOs now charge for data?
Billing vendors are trying to keep up with the phenomenal growth of data and the need to support different charging mechanisms. However, the data market dynamics are such that it makes them hard to cope with these changes and implement them in a short time. The constant billing system updates also comes at a cost, with which most of MNOs are not willing to keep up. We believe the flexibility in billing platforms should be increased, thus enabling MNOs to create their own service/charging logic without going through the pain of frequent investing in billing platforms.
Pen San Tang, founding director of Packet One and on the GTI Steering Committee
Could the TD-LTE eco-system match or even outpace that of FDD? Pen San Tang, founding director of Packet One and on the GTI Steering Committee, certainly think so. To hear more from Tang come to hear him speak in the TD-LTE track on Day One of the 9th annual LTE Asia conference, taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.
How is P1 progressing with the launch of LTE-based services?
P1 is in the midst of completing a strategic investment agreement and joint collaboration between Malaysia’s leading broadband player, Telekom Malaysia Berhad and its existing stakeholders; founder Green Packet Berhad and South Korea’s SK Telecom for the rollout of LTE. The transaction is anticipated to be completed by Q3, and the teams have come together to do extensive planning.
What is your strategy to move from WiMAX to TD-LTE?
P1’s WiMAX network will continue to provide broadband services to customers as a parallel LTE network is built out. Once WiMAX customers have migrated out over a number of years, P1 expects to use the 2.3Ghz spectrum as an additional capacity band to meet the growing data demands of customers. However, the use of the spectrum would be subject to local regulatory approval.
Anuradha Udunuwara, Engineer, Sri Lanka Telecom
Anuradha Udunuwara, Engineer, Sri Lanka Telecom is speaking on Day One of the 9th annual LTE Asia conference, taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore. Click here to download a brochure for the event.
In this Q&A Udunuwara tells us about the challenges facing Sri Lanka Telecom’s network, and what the most important technologies to look at for enhancing the network.
What are the major network-related engineering challenges you expect to face over the next 12 months?
In terms of challenges, I see fewer engineering challenges and more commercial and financial challenges. While technology and engineering enables us to overcome most of the challenges, the real challenge for operators will be how to minimize CAPEX/OPEX/TCO and increase revenue/profits. That requires innovation, common sense, changing plans and taking risks.
On the network side, what’s important is supporting the increased bandwidth requirements and optimizing packet transport techniques. Major challenges will arise in supporting migrations from legacy [Circuit/TDM (Time Division Multiplexing)] to next generation [Packet/IP (Internet Protocol)/Ethernet]. On the financial side the challenge will be how to best make future-proof investments.
How are you using analytics on your networks to gain more subscriber knowledge?
Network analytics are important in order to gain knowledge about the behaviour of the traffic in the network. If you correctly translate this knowledge, you can gain a good understanding of how the subscriber/user/consumer/customer applications behave, and eventually, how the individuals behave. This knowledge helps operators to perform the required network and service optimizations, introduce or change products to suit that behaviour, and finally to take informed investment decisions. We are working on these lines and would like to focus more on this area in the future.