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Posts Tagged ‘#capcrunch’

Speed Management? Throttling? Capacity? Which is it to be?

Written by GoS on . Posted in Blog

Revenues from telecoms services in Europe are continuing to decline, according to recent news . As might be expected the decline is much larger in fixed networks than in mobile, although broadband services continue to show growth. Operators recognise this by continuing to invest.

Of course, they can’t continue to invest without the expectation of securing growth somewhere. This imperative is starting to be realised through creative pricing. Different operators are trying different approaches: some are capping the amount of data that a user can consume and introducing tiers, while others are introducing clear speed restrictions with options to upgrade to faster rates.

There are likely to be many more variations on these themes and it’s not clear which is going to offer the best chance of generating better future returns. There’s a lot of discussion, but it’s fair to say that we don’t know the answers yet. What is clear is that long-held notions of how to capture value from customers are being questioned and over-turned.

The ability to be creative and inventive with pricing schemes is clearly going to be crucial. Models that do not work need to be swiftly replaced by others. This agility requires a sophisticated infrastructure to determine what works, what doesn’t and what gains consumer acceptance – which can all be contentious issues.

Cutting through this uncertainty is one of the primary motivational factors behind the deployment of policy-enabled networks. By linking policy management to an understanding of user behaviour and network performance, network operators can refine their pricing packages to generate value. They can then determine the right technical and commercial approach for their customers and network.

For this to work, they need to go beyond traditional policy frameworks and ingrate user devices into their thinking. This means that they need to extend policy control into user devices. They need to be able to measure, monitor and manage user consumption in devices, not only to ensure an optimised experience but also to ensure that users conform to the packages they purchase.

By implementing solutions in user devices, operators can also ensure they are in a position to change pricing policies in the future if circumstances change or if they find that their ideas need adjusting. They can experiment and test ideas and offers. The agile operators of the future needs true end-to-end policy control and management capabilities to achieve this – abilities that are enabled by GoS Networks.


More than 50% of UK consumers are unhappy with mobile broadband

Written by GoS on . Posted in Blog

In recent news, it has been revealed that more than half of UK consumers are unhappy with mobile broadband speeds. Poor performance affects their mobile broadband experience and, if speeds aren’t as expected, user dissatisfaction results.

According to Broadband Genie, a leading, independent consumer comparison site, this is probably due to advances in fixed broadband speeds: consumers are now enjoying faster and faster speeds in the home, but mobile broadband rates haven’t kept up. As we have often remarked, users increasingly expect their applications to perform the same wherever they are: and that means whether mobile or in the home.

Of course, LTE is still unavailable in the UK and there is no clear date for its launch, unlike in many other countries that have either launched operational services or have clear dates by which they will do so. Perhaps the uncertainty over LTE is limiting investment in capacity in the UK; while LTE plans are unclear, it may be that upgrades to existing infrastructure are delayed.

What has been overlooked, however, is the potential for operators to do more to optimise user experience with the resources they do have available. One of the problems is that upstream and downstream bandwidth is contended, so the available bandwidth is limited by what other users in the same cell are doing. This means that applications that don’t actually require a great deal of bandwidth to perform satisfactorily may be adversely impacted by others, simply because every active user is doing the same thing at the same time, or because a few users are consuming much more bandwidth than they really need. But not all applications need the same level of resources; with finite limitations, it becomes a zero sum game, with perhaps many competing applications taking more than the share of resources they really need.

But if operators can monitor application demands and performance they may be able to balance demands effectively. This can be achieved by provisioning smart phones and dongle-enabled devices with smart clients that monitor and control demand so that application performance can be optimised even though overall bandwidth remains limited. By providing such solutions, operators can make more efficient use of the resources they have and provide an optimised user experience that increases satisfaction and helps manage the transition towards LTE, when it eventually takes place.

After all, such troubling headlines have a habit of spreading, but operators could very easily take action to generate more favourable publicity. And, it would be very easy to promote the uptake of such solutions: if users think there is a quick fix to their problems, they will undoubtedly take advantage of it.


#Verizon to throttle heavy users #BSSOSS #capcrunch #mobile

Written by GoS on . Posted in Blog

It has been reported that US MNO Verizon is to introduce throttling to control the consumption of some of their heaviest data users. As is the case in many networks, a minority of users consume the greatest amount of capacity. The result can be that the user experience for everyone else is affected by the demand of the few.

In response to this, Verizon plans to slow down the experience of the small group of heavy users. And, what’s more, they don’t appear to plan to do so universally, but rather on an ad-hoc basis when activity causes too much congestion in a particular cell.

This means that the heavy users can download or upload to their heart’s content when resources are available, but have to slow down when other, less demanding users are active. And, the changes are reflected in the next month’s bill.

We have seen a range of responses from MNOs to increased demands for network consumption lately and will likely see many more. Slowly but surely, the industry is inching away from flat rate data tariffs to a model more suited to the reality of broadband services. It should be self-evident that some users are more demanding than others, but it’s equally clear that, once this heavy consumption has an impact on other users, action needs to be taken.