Wednesday, November 30, 2011

NSN: "VoIP Applications Create Huge Signaling Load"

Nokia Siemens Networks educates the market and pushes its solution for the mobile signaling problem for long time now, as many operators say it is a major problem both in terms of performance (traffic and long-living sessions) and well as battery draining issue for subscribers. This becomes even more relevant to NSN now, as mobile broadband becomes its main business focus (here).

A new post to the vendors' blog by Gerald Reddig (pictured), Global Marketing Manager, shows how "A European 3G network is benefiting from a 30% signaling traffic reduction, three months after Network Controlled Fast Dormancy (NCFD) was implemented by Nokia Siemens Networks ..  Nokia and Apple decided early on to support NCFD on their smartphones [here], with Blackberry [here] and Android OS device [here] manufacturers like Samsung, LG and Sony Ericsson following suit"

",, Standardized in 3GPP Release 8 [see below], Nokia Siemens Networks’ Network Controlled Fast Dormancy or NCFD aids by acting as a more intermediate state: one with less signaling and faster reconnections"

"Nokia Siemens Networks’ Smart Labs [here] tested popular over-the-top (OTT) VoIP applications running on different smartphone operation systems. One of the results was the huge signaling load caused by VoIP applications in non-NCFD enabled smartphones – 600% more signaling traffic"

See "Faster connections, longer-lasting batteries: A fifth of all smartphones now benefit from Network Controlled Fast Dormancy" - here.

See also - "T-Mobile Netherlands Reduces Data Signaling by 30% with NSN Cell_PCH" - here and "SFR Deploys NSN Cell_PCH Optimization Technology" (here)

PCC Deployments [106]: Orange[Tunisia] Uses Volubill for Personalized Charging and Bandwidth Management

Orange Tunisia coverage map
Volubill announced that its "..VBS solution will provide Orange Tunisia with increased organizational and orchestration abilities to better manage charging policies for a growing portfolio of service packages across a complex array of network systems. It will also allow the operator to more effectively market its offerings to a growing subscriber base .. Volubill's charging and policy solutions will be leveraged to design new self-care capabilities for customers, implement more personalized and segmented charging models, and provide enhanced bandwidth management functions to promote fair use of network resources among all customers".

Volubill Business System (VBS) was announced recently (see "Volubill: "We have chosen to restructure our product suites" - here) , and includes a policy manager and charging servers.

Orange Tunisia (previously Divona Telecom) is partially owned by the Orange Group (49%). On June 30, 2011 it had 431,000 mobile customers.  

See "Volubill Brings Convergent Charging to Orange Tunisia" - here.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

[Yankee Group]: Policy Control Market to Reach $1.4B in 2015; Sees Sharp Price Decline

According to Jennifer Pigg (pictured), Affiliate, Yankee Group latest report "Drivers including fair use, enhanced use cases, network convergence, VoLTE and M2M will combine to finally push the network policy control market over the billion-dollar mark in 2014, and to $1.394B in 2015, representing a heady 31% CAGR from the 2010 market of $365M"

The report findings below (small market size, sharp price decline) as well as very large number of vendors (here)] led the Ms. Pigg to conclude that "Until now, stand-alone policy vendors  have dominated the market. Moving forward, it will be led by control plane and large system vendors". See recent product announcements from Oracle (here) and Amdocs (here), as well as the Telcordia acquisition by Ericsson (here).
  • "At $365 million for 2010, the policy and charging rules function (PCRF) market is tiny. However, with the role it plays in monetizing the network, the PCRF is the lynchpin for billions of dollars of mobile operator enhanced service revenues." 
  • "Pricing for PCRF has decreased from $4 per active session to around $1 per active session. Yankee Group expects a further decline of around 10 percent over the next 12 months and up to 25 percent over the next 36 months"
Comparison to other forecasts - here.

See "The Market for Network Policy Control" - here.

Bandwidth Caps Keep Netflix away from New Zealand

After announcing expansion to Canada (here), Latin America (here) and the UK (here) - Bandwidth caps and copyright issues prevent Netflix from offering its streaming services in New Zealand.

Hamish Fletcher reports that Paul Brislen (pictured), CEO of Telecommunications User Association (TUANZ), said that Brent Ayrey, VP product innovation, Netflix told him that:

 ".. Netflix had no intention of launching in New Zealand. Despite the strong demand for online video and content, the quality of the local internet network and low data caps would be problematic for Netflix".

Mr. Brislen added that " .. [We heard that] next year the average Netflix customer in the US will need a data cap of one terabyte a month. I've got one of the bigger caps in New Zealand and I'm sitting at 60 gigabytes. I would need 1000 gigabytes of data. The whole crowd gasped at that point".

See for example - broadband plans from Telecom New Zealand (here). When the monthly cap is reached the subscriber can "Choose what happens when you exceed your data allowance: Continue at broadband speed for $2 [US$1.5] per extra GB or surf at reduced speed (64Kbps max) at no extra cost".

Note that for Canada, where bandwidth caps was an a major issue during the last months (here), Netflix offers a reduced quality option that "use 2/3 less data on average, with minimal impact to video quality. Now Canadians can watch 30 hours of streaming from Netflix in a month that will consume only 9 GBytes of data, well below most data caps "

See story at New Zealand Herald - "Netflix turned off by low data caps" - here.

[Update 47: Amdocs PCC Launch] PCRF - DPI Compatibility Matrix

Amdocs officially launched its PCC product, based on the acquired Bridgewater Systems products.

Several products were added to the offering, under a new "Network Control" segment including 3G-LTE products (on is the Policy Controller) and "Multi-Access" products.

The press release focuses on the integrated solution - "A unified hardware and software system, the Amdocs Data Experience Solution (see previous posts - here and here) pre-integrates a policy control and charging engine with product catalog and subscriber management functions, and the necessary business support, network interfaces, and pre-configured business processes, to deliver specific, out-of-the-box market offers".

" .. It leverages the market leading network and policy control assets of Bridgewater Systems, including standards-based interfaces and multi-vendor interoperability for ease of deployment into 3G and LTE network environments. Productized APIs (application programming interfaces) enable a single point of integration into provisioning, notification, billing and self-care environments".

The PCRF-DPI matrix (here) was updated to reflect the above, keeping the previous interoperability relations the BWS product had with Allot, Arbor, Cisco and Sandvine.

See "Amdocs Unveils Industry-First, Pre-Integrated Offering for Rapid Creation and Monetization of New Data Services in 3G and LTE Networks" - here.

Monday, November 28, 2011

[UK]: Skype Uses Recent Ofcom Statement to Stop MNO Blocking

After Ofcom presented its Net Neutrality position last week (here), in which "open internet service" does not allow for "specific services being hindered or blocked", Skype decided to act (and not wait for the consumers to do so, like the recent case in Korea - see "Complaint against SK Telecom & KT for Blocking VoIP over 3G (Using DPI)" - here).

Jean-Jacques Sahel (picture), head of European regulatory affairs at Skype, told Bloomberg" “You would expect us to be more impatient than Ofcom .. In Europe, there's still a huge amount of restrictions ..Through meeting with operators within an industry group, Skype is seeking “some sort of commitment” to retain open access to services"

Skype has longtime good relations with at least one UK MNO - see "Skype Does Good for 3UK" - here. O2 said a year ago (here) that it "wants to be able to charge content providers to offer their websites and services on its network".

As Ofcom says, and specifically for OTT VoIP services, one doesn’t need to block a service in order to make it worthless to its subscribers. See "Cisco: How does ASR 5000 Monitor and Control OTT VoIP?" - here for an example.

Article by Kenneth Wong, Robert Valpuesta - "Skype ‘Impatient' With Operators Pushes for U.K. Access" - here.

Amdocs Data Experience Solution Online Launch

Amdocs is holding a 4 days (!) online event (Nov 29- Dec 2) to indicate the launch of its Data Experience Solution (see "Amdocs Integrates BWS - Introduces a Charging and Policy Management Solution" - here).

A special site is now open for the event, the agenda is here.  

One of the items on the agenda (Dec 1, 9:00AM EST) is an "Analyst Chat: Service Model Innovation" -Who is implementing what type of services models in the industry? Teresa Cottam (previous posts -here and here) from Telesperience chats about her blog post on the evolution of mobile data services.

[The Marker]: Amdocs and Oracle After Comverse Billing

A year ago there were several rumors of possible acquisition of Comverse by ZTE/Huawei (here) or Oracle/Platinum  (here, here). Since then Comverse re-started itself ("Comverse 3.0" - here) has managed to fix its Nasdaq trading status, but the rumors of its acquisition keep coming back.

Ram Ozeri reports to the news site The Marker that "The candidates for Comverse billing units acquisition are Amdocs and Oracle" (here, Hebrew). Both did not comment.

The publicly traded company (Comverse Technology Inc - NASDAQ:CMVT, market cap of $1.35B) has also holdings in other companies, mainly in Verint (NASDAQ:VRNT, market cap of $1.02B). Its "Comverse Segment" (see H1 2011 financial results below) includes several product lines, major ones being billing, Value-added Services and mobile internet products (PCRF/PCEF - here, here).

From the above and other reports it is not clear if the holding company is selling the whole segment or just its billing unit.

Recently, both Amdocs and Oracle have invested in Policy Management (PCRF) products - Amdocs acquired Bridgewater Systems (integration to be announced today - here) and Oracle launched its own product (here and here). Of course, the PCRF market is much smaller than billing.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

[Juniper Research]: 430M LTE Subscribers by 2016; Attracted by speeds and Service Guarantees

A new report by Nitin Bhas (pictured), Research Analyst, Juniper Research forecasts "a rapid uptake of LTE mobile broadband technology in the next five years but with a very limited global reach. Subscriber levels will attain 428m by 2016 but will only reach 6% of the global subscriber population .. the total number of LTE base station deployments will reach almost 1 million by 2014 .. LTE smartphones and tablets will dominate the LTE connected end user device market, accounting for 50% of the total LTE subscribers by 2016".

Report author added: ‘With LTE being offered as a premium level service initially, enterprise subscribers will be attracted by the improved data speeds and the service guarantees that will be offered. The emerging factor that will drive consumer take-up later in the forecast and beyond is the embedding of LTE technology in consumer devices.'

Forecasts for the number of LTE subscribers expected in 2015-6 vary among the research companies, but they all show small percentage of the total number of mobile subscribers, that is expected to be at the size of world population (~7B):
  • Informa said in November that "By 2016, there will be 100 million LTE subscribers in the US compared to 613 million LTE subscribers worldwide" (Mike Roberts - pictured, here
  • Infonetics Research said last June that "The number of LTE subscribers is forecast by Infonetics to top 290 million by 2015" (here)
  • Maravedis said in June that "The number of users on long term evolution (LTE) networks will reach 326 million by 2016" (stoty by ZDNet, here)
  • Pyramid Research forecasted earlier this year "422 million LTE subscribers in 2015" (here)
Juniper Research press release - "LTE Mobile Broadband Subscribers to Reach Almost 430m by 2016 but Will Only Represent 6% of Subscribers Globally" - here; "4G LTE Opportunities" - report page here and whitepaper- here.

See also:
  • ABI Research: "LTE adoption will take off more rapidly than expected" - here
  • [Infonetics]: Greenfield LTE Deployments Targeting DSL Replacement - here
  • [Analysys Mason]: LTE - a Potential Drive for Subscriptions Growth in Europe - here

Rumors: Akamai to Buy Cotendo for $300M

Ronni Zehavi, CEO
Asaf Gilad reports to Calcalist that 4 years old CDN startup Cotendo is about to be sold to Akamai, for $300M.No comment was received from Cotendo, and Akamai provided the expected response from a public company - "our policy is not to respond to rumors".

Cotendo (see "Cotendo's Cloudlet - Getting Closer to the Subscriber" - here), based in Israel, has 90 employees, and lists Google (see "Cotendo CEO: "We have a fertile technological dialogue with Google" - here), Facebook,  Microsoft and AOL among its customers.

In addition to a number of VC funds (here), Cotendo has Citrix and Juniper as shareholders and strategic partners (see "Cotendo Raises $17M; Announces Mobile Acceleration Suite and Partners with Citrix and Juniper"- here).

The company’s revenues for 2011 are expected to reach $20-30M. A year ago, MIT and Akamai filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Cotendo (here), shortly after AT&T announced it will use Cotendo's technology (here).

Story - here (Hebrew).

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Amdocs Integrates BWS - Introduces a Charging and Policy Management Solution

David Sharpley,
VP Products and Business, D
ata Experience Business Unit
Amdocs sent a pre-announcement mailer, stating that on "On November 28th, Amdocs will launch the Data Experience Solution.. The Data Experience Solution brings together policy and charging functions to address key use cases for mobile operators" 
 ".. it is fully productized, featuring productized integration between the Policy, Charging and Product Catalog functions. It features eight popular market offers – available out of the box and preconfigured as part of the solution – including tiered services, bill shock, bandwidth boost, WiFi offload, LTE services and more. The Data Experience Solution is delivered as a complete package – deployed on a single hardware/software system that will revolutionize the way mobile operators introduce data services". See also - Infonetics Believes in an "integrated policy/charging solution" - here.

Needless to say that the policy management part comes from the Bridgewater acquisition (here) and obsoletes Amdocs' short-living own PCRF product (see - "Amdocs Launches PCRF" - here). The charging part is based on Amdocs' Turbo Charging product.

Also, according to its recent tweets, Bridgewater is now "the Amdocs Data Experience team".

Friday, November 25, 2011

Alcatel Lucent 7750 DPI Technology

A recent post to ALU's Techzine blog by Aleksandar Pavlovic (pictured), Senior Marketing Manager for Wireless, provides some information on the applications identification (DPI) technology of the vendor's 7750 Service Routers Mobile Gateway.

See also "ALU Positions the 7750-SR as a DPI based Mobile Application Assurance Gateway" - here).

"Application identification is made on positive matching between a traffic flow and a locally kept database of application signatures. The detection of applications is further facilitated and made more manageable by the use of application filters, which can be customized to define the use of protocol signatures and other criteria that define an application"

The following criteria can be assigned to an application rule filter entry:
  • Protocol signature
  • String-based matching: For Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP), Wireless Application Protocol (WAP), Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) and Transport Layer Security (TLS)
  • Flow setup detection
  • Network IP address
  • Network port number
  • IP protocol number
  • Unique application name
  • Unique entry ID number
Network applications of interest are identified and managed by MSPs using a very structured approach. This allows:
  • Quick and easy configuration
  • Applications to be organized into groups
  • Customization of application filters and associated policy actions
See "Mobile Application Assurance" - here.

Complaint against SK Telecom & KT for Blocking VoIP over 3G (Using DPI)

We have seen this before (China, KPN, MetroPCS, TeliaSonera) - and here is another example of how mobile operators are trying either to protect their voice revenues or increase ARPU from what they consider as a "premium service" (see also yesterday’s post on Application based Charging - here).

My People
Yoon Ja-young reports to The Korea Times that "Telecommunications companies here have been preventing mobile Voice over Internet Protocol (mVoIP) .. which eat into their profits and weigh on the network ..The Citizens’ Coalition for Economic Justice (CCEJ) and Jinbo Network, the country’s leading NGOs, filed a complaint against SK Telecom and KT, the two biggest industry players, with the Fair Trade Commission and Korea Communications Commiss .. They also submitted a petition to the National Human Rights Commission seeking restrictions on deep packet inspection (DPI), technology which enables monitoring the communication of users" (see "Is it Possible to Block Skype with DPI ?" - here and "The Challenges of Maintaining a Current DPI "Signatures File" - here)
"Mobile Internet phone services, such as “My People” operated by Daum and “Skype,” send voice through the data networks of mobile carriers. Smartphone users welcomed these services as they can make free phone calls. Instead of levying charges on consumers, mVoIP firms consider advertisements as their income source. SK Telecom and KT however, have banned such services in their customer contracts, except for those who subscribe to the premium data packages costing 54,000 won ($46) or more a month"

An SK Telecom representative said that ".. few countries which fully allowed mVoIP, such as the United States and the Netherlands [here], saw a raise in mobile rates ..  it is impossible to intercept communications with DPI technology. “It only analyzes the type of packets that pass the network. There is no way to analyze the content included in the packet. It is unrelated with private information or privacy
See "Carriers under fire for banning free Internet telephone services" - here.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

[UK]: Self Regulation doesn't Satisfy Ofcom; Publishes Minimum Disclosure Level

The UK regulator, Ofcom, made its first move towards Net Neutrality, just few days after the FCC rules became effective in the US, and it is mainly (or only?) about transparency, which is also the FCC's first rule (here).
Ofcom also defines "two broad forms of internet traffic management - Best-efforts and Managed Services" - a very different approach compared to the FCC's "no unreasonable discrimination" rule.
Ofcom said today that it "set out the steps it expects Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to take to ensure customers are aware how internet traffic is being managed on their networks". UK biggest ISPs have been "transparent" to a certain degree already. Half a year ago "Seven of the country's biggest fixed line broadband ISPs and mobile operators, including BT , Sky Broadband , TalkTalk , Virgin Media , O2 , Three (3) and Vodafone UK published a new Voluntary Code of Practice for broadband Traffic Management transparency" (here).

However, it seems that it was not enough for Ofcom: ".. Although ISPs already provide some consumer information on their use of traffic management, Ofcom believes it currently does not go far enough and needs to be made clearer and easier to understand" (see also " UK Regulator Sets Goals and Recommends Using "Typical Speeds Range" in Broadband Advertising" - here).

To increase transparency, "Ofcom has set out a basic level of information which ISPs should provide to their customers at the point of sale including:
  • Average speed information that indicates the level of service consumers can expect to receive;
  • Information about the impact of any traffic management that is used on specific types of services, such as reduced download speeds during peak times for peer-to-peer software; and
  • Information on any specific services that are blocked, resulting in consumers being unable to run the services and applications of their choice"
For the other aspects of Net Neutrality, Ofcom distinguishes between
  • 'Best-efforts' internet access, under which network operators attempt to convey all traffic on more or less equal terms. This results in an 'open internet' with no specific services being hindered or blocked, although some may need to be managed during times of congestion.
  • Managed Services, under which network operators prioritise certain traffic according to the value they ascribe to it. An example may be the prioritisation of a high quality IPTV service over other traffic. This amounts to a form of discrimination, but one that is normally efficiency enhancing.  
"Our approach to traffic management recognises the benefits associated with both types of service, and seeks for them to co-exist. Our overall aim is to ensure that consumers and citizens continue to benefit from both innovation in services and investment in networks"

See "Improving traffic management transparency" - here ; full statement "Ofcom’s approach to net neutrality" - here.

NSN CEO: "our signaling and data traffic management tools lead the field"

While it is sad to see 17,000 people leaving one of the biggest telecommunications vendors, it was interesting to hear (from the point of view of this blog) that Nokia Siemens Networks focus will be on mobile broadband (in which they say they are strong #2) and that intelligent signaling and data traffic management plays a major role in NSN's future.

The recent NSN announcement of Liquid Net which includes data traffic management (see "NSN Adds Intelligent Broadband Management" - here) is a major component of this new focus.
In his presentation (here) to the analysts and press community yesterday, NSN CEO Rajeev Suri (pictured), said that "the future is in mobile broadband & services .. the first leg of our strategy is end-to-end mobile network infrastructure and services with particular emphasis on mobile broadband .. we expect our [R&D] investment in mobile broadband to increase in coming years .. our goal is to provide the industry most efficient mobile networks, the intelligence to maximize the value of those networks .. our signaling and data traffic management tools lead the field".
Some of my posts related to the above items: 
  • Traffic Management:
    • Vendor Review: NSN Flexi-NG's DPI support - here
    • Allot Partners with NSN; Wins a 25M Subscribers Russian Fixed & Mobile Operator - here
    • NSN CEO: "DPI tools help manage networks effectively" - here
    • NSN: Policy based Traffic Management with Flexi NG + DPI" - here
  • Signaling:
    • NSN Helps Reducing Irrelevant Blackberry Signaling" - here
    • NSN and Qualcomm Show 50% More Efficient Signaling - here
    • NSN: Android and Blackberry Phones Overload Networks with Signaling - here
    • SFR Deploys NSN Cell_PCH Optimization Technology - here
    • NSN: New iPhone OS Saves Network Resources - here
  • Smarter networks - NSN Makes Wi-Fi Offloading Smarter - here

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Dean Bubley: "application-based charging for mobile data won't work"

While my blog often advocates DPI based policy management as a way to increase ARPU and I think it is fair to show other opinions, such the one [also often] expressed by Dean Bubley (pictured), founder of Disruptive Analysis.

In a his recent blog post, following the Broadband Traffic Management Congress held last week, Dean adds another reason as for why he doesn't believe in such business model - although " lots of DPI and PCRF vendors have spent a lot of money on custom silicon and software to crunch through "traffic" and have promoted standards like 3GPP's new "Traffic Detection Function", and are now determined to justify the hype".

Dean goes back to the old issue of "cat-and-mouse game" between the application/content creators and the DPI systems trying to identify the traffic, as well as the difficulty in defining the boundaries of each application or service. This was indeed the main challenge when DPI systems when their main use was to limit P2P and VoIP traffic, but then the time it took the vendors to support new or updated protocols was not critical.

When traffic classification is attached to revenues - the time required to make the necessary changes (see "The Challenges of Maintaining a Current DPI "Signatures File" - here and "Rogers [Canada] Admits its P2P Traffic Management Impacts Interactive Gaming" - here and here) becomes very critical. Also, "zero-rating" plans maybe charged (or counted towards volume-caps) breaching the service plans terms.

These are valid arguments, as long as the ISP and the content providers are acting as "enemies" - and the ISP tries to monetize popular content. However, a partnership between the two may create a win-win situation, justified by new revenues to the OTT, derived from improved service. See for example - "Yankee Group: MNOs Should Give Customers Choices for VoIP" - here or even Dean's comment to my previous post "DT Believes in "Two-Sided" Business Model - OTT to Pay for QoS" - here.

Nevertheless, such model does not follow the very basic logic that is behind Net Neutrality, as it provides an unfair advantage to the large content owners and may simply kill the ability of new startups to reach the masses (see recent EU decision - here).

See "Another reason why application-based charging for mobile data won't work" - here.

Mobixell and Commtouch Offer Parental Control W/Real Time Content Categorization

Regulation in some countries requires ISPs to block certain sites to all or some of the subscribers. Just recently we saw the legislation efforts in the US (here) and a court order in the UK (here) to block sites that feature copyrighted content, but the most common case is the global effort to stop child abuse content, or protect minors (and other people) from accessing inappropriate content. Some countries even censor sites for political or other reasons (imagine that!).
There are many ways to block sites, but as the UK regulator, Ofcom, concluded recently that "All site blocking techniques can be circumvented" (here). Nevertheless, regulation and possibly customer demand (see "Parental Control Opportunity: 87% Say they Need it, Only 43% has it" - here) drive vendors to offer a more robust technology that includes real-time categorization and verification of content.

A new integrated solution from Mobixell Networks and Commtouch claims to offer such solution.

The two vendors announced that " .. Mobixell Seamless Access Mobile Internet Gateway, featuring Commtouch GlobalView™ URL Filtering offers advanced content filtering capabilities which enable telecom operators to improve security for mobile device users and ensure compliance with child protection Web content legislation.. enabling telecom operators to block access to Web sites deemed unfit for children and comply with even the strictest child protection regulation. Content categorization from Commtouch is available as a module of the Mobixell Seamless Access Mobile Internet Gateway which enables telecom operators to manage complex content delivery policies, offering a variety of opt-in user protection services, including parental control, real-time rating and content verification"
"The content categorization mechanism within the Mobixell platform is powered by Commtouch’s GlobalView URL Filtering solution and the cloud-based GlobalView Network. The technology continuously monitors and analyzes Web traffic to provide real-time, accurate categorization of URLs from anywhere in the world. The solution accurately categorizes dynamic user generated content and Web 2.0 sites".

See "Protecting Children from Mobile Porn Gets Push from National Governments" - here.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Verizon: "video quality has to be optimized to the particular device it's consumed on"

Interesting story by Sarah Reedy (pictured) for Light Reading provides insight into Verizon's 3G/4G video optimization technology. 
Mitch Dornich, Verizon's director of product management and head of Verizon Video, told Sarah the following (there is more in the article "Verizon Tweaks Mobile Video for Data Caps" - here - I just took the optimization related stuff):
  • Video quality has to be optimized to the particular device it's consumed on .. taking into account if the phone is on 3G or 4G, how large the screen is, how capable the processor is and what kind of data package the consumer has
  • We’ve matrixed and said, 'Based on a device with a screen size of X and processor of Y and a 3G network, here's the optimum bit rate to stream it at and how to encode it' .. It’s not prioritizing traffic or differentiating traffic. It's right-sizing to the size of the device.

  • That doesn't mean always delivering the highest-quality video either .. It's what the processor can handle, as well as what makes sense based on the user's data plan (see "Verizon's UBB Starts July 7; Tethering Surcharge: $20"- here)

Nevertheless, Verizon said in September (here) that  ".. to optimize our network, we manage data connection speeds for a small subset of customers".

So we are looking at a combination of policies, with different goals. 

See also a previous post - "Optimization Deployment: Verizon Wireless Optimizes Web & Video using Transcoding, Caching and Buffer Tuning" - here).

Study: Majority of MNOs Worried of Revenues Decline due to OTT Applications

Mavenir Systems published the findings of an independent study, carried out by mobileSQUARED, checking the impact of OTT chat and voice over IP applications such as Skype, iMessage, Facebook Message, Google Talk and WhatsApp on traditional operator-based SMS and voice services.

The study, based on interviews with 31 global mobile operators, found that ".. one third of operators already see traffic and revenue decline and three-quarters of operators are worried about losing revenues to this new group of mobile application providers .. The largest single group, 32.3 per cent of respondents thought operator traffic (from messaging, voice and video calling) would decline between 11 and 20 per cent and a further 20 per cent expected a decline of 31 to 40 per cent over the next 5-10 year period .. 42 per cent of operators say that they will roll-out IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) based services to offer RCSe and VoLTE, while 45 per cent of operators think that other similar technologies would enable a quicker route to market" 

When KPN tried to compensate itself for the reduced revenues lately (see "KPN [Uses DPI] to Charge Extra for VoIP, Messaging and Streaming Video" - here) it led the Netherlands to be the first European country with a Net Neutrality law (here).

Gavin Patterson (pictured), chief markets analyst & head of data at mobileSQUARED, said: “The mobile landscape is changing as users embrace messaging of all kinds that enable them to seamlessly message a multitude of devices. This study confirms that lucrative messaging revenues are already impacted and operators are assessing ways to deliver core-network services in the all-IP environment. Rich Communication Ecosystem (RCE) applications are one example of how mobile operators can overcome the hurdles they face.”

See "Study on The Threat to Mobile Operators’ Voice and Messaging Revenues" - here.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Optimization Deployments[105]: MTS[Russia] Uses Flash Networks for Unlimited Mobile Users

Mobile TeleSystems (MTS) announced ".. the deployment of Flash NetworksHarmony Mobile Internet Services Gateway to optimize the volume of mobile data traffic. With this deployment, MTS is able to reduce content and web page download times and increase mobile Internet speed .. MTS launched a pilot project to test the technology for all customers in Murmansk. By the end of 2011, the new traffic optimization technology will be available to all users of the MTS unlimited mobile internet in Russia. The solution was developed by Flash Networks and integrated in MTS’ network together with the Russian system integrator Technoserv".

Sergei Stepanyuk (pictured), Head of Data Transmission Department at MTS said: “Using the data optimization platform allows us to reduce our mobile network data transmission load by almost 40% and our transit load by 30%, ultimately resulting in faster Internet speeds and better quality of data services for our users".

See "MTS Launches Innovative Solution to Optimize Mobile Internet" - here.

MTS has more than 71M mobile subscribers in Russia (see 1st chart below), and a saw sharp growth in data revenues this year (50% in first 9 months - see 2nd chart).

DT Believes in "Two-Sided" Business Model - OTT to Pay for QoS

More than a year ago, Deutsche Telecom's CEO, René Obermann, said that "OTT providers should pay for High Quality" (here). Last week, during its presentation at the Broadband Traffic Management EventMarkus Freikamp, DT's head of international mobile wholesale business models, maintained this position - although it seems that it will take some time to build.

Michelle Donegan  report to Light Reading that Mr. Freikamp said that "the operator was targeting the so-called "two-sided" business model. That means, whoever puts the load on the networks should be the one paying .. We believe in that model and believe the industry will change that way .. It's not here today, maybe not tomorrow, but the day after tomorrow .. There's more confidence today on delivering QoS on fixed than on mobile networks".

No word on Net Neutrality.

See "DT Wants Cash From Content Owners" - here.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Oracle - Advantages of Integrated Policy, Charging and Subscriber Data Management

The slides below are taken from a presentation made by Anders Lundqvist (pictured), Master Principal Architect, Oracle (here). Oracle announced recently its PCRF product - Oracle's Policy Controller (covered here), part of its Communications Service Delivery.

A similar concept was introduced by Openet a year ago (see "S.O.S Call from Openet" - here). "The SOS category unifies four interrelated markets that have previously been served separately, despite their interdependence on one another: Mediation, Subscriber Data Management (SDM), Policy Management and Real-Time Charging".