Tuesday, October 4, 2011

PCRF Deployments [94]: Bharti [India] Uses PCRF for Billing and VAS (and Needs to Scale!)

Gagandeep Kaur, interviewed Amrita Gangotra (pictured), Director IT, India & South Asia, Bharti Airtel to Light Reading on the IT changes to the operator network in India.

Among other IT issues, Ms. Gangotra was asked about the changes made to the IT systems "before the launch of 3G services few months back"

The answer was: "3G had a significant impact both on the network and IT side. We implemented PCRF for the first time last year. The business logic around billing had to pretty much change. When we implemented PCRF, it was not in its full-fledged form but obviously we are improving  .. The challenge that we have is that our scale is huge [see below]. As soon as we deploy any system we have to start thinking of scaling it. A lot of times, vendors test out the scale in our environment. And it is a pre-paid market ...so the behavior of PCRF has to be adopted for this market. Last year we started a project called Vastu, which was about the technical initiatives which we needed to take to bring-in the VAS vendors on a common platform".

As for the scale issue - according to the latest report from the Cellular Operators' Association of India (here), Bharti-Airtel added 1.15M subscribers during August 2011, bringing the total number of subscribers to 171.8M, the largest Indian mobile operator with 28% market share.

See "Interview - Amrita Gangotra: Director - IT, India & South Asia, Bharti Airtel" - here.

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