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Posts Tagged ‘User Experience’

A Device-Based Solution for Managing Seamless Wi-Fi Offload from 3G / LTE Networks

Written by GoS on . Posted in Blog

Mobile data traffic continues to grow, but evidence shows that the rate of growth has slowed in recent years, principally as a result of Wi-Fi offload. This could become one of the biggest challenges facing the mobile industry. But, if managed in the right way, MNOs can transform this challenge into a proactive strategy that derives multiple benefits for both themselves and their subscribers.

Instead of passive disengagement, MNOs can become actively involved with Wi-Fi offload so that they can maximise the benefits to them and to their customers. Indeed, proactive Wi-Fi offload strategies can create additional economic and strategic benefits for all parties.

Wi-Fi has a clear role to play as part of a heterogeneous approach to network coverage. Such an approach not only includes Wi-Fi offload as an option for users, but also encompasses use of Wi-Fi Access Points (APs) to increase coverage more generally within cells.

What is needed to enable Wi-Fi to fulfil this role is an approach that combines the benefits of both Hotspot 2.0 and ANDSF solutions, but which also incorporates smart devices and enables these to become an active element in the network selection, handover and roaming process. Such an approach would recognise the fundamental need to make user experience central to access network selection.

The solution to this challenge is two-fold, and puts the point of control directly onto the device. First, decomposing the ANDSF allows a client to be deployed on the smart mobile device to locally manage access network selection in co-ordination with defined network policies. Second, the client should also be able to act as a Policy and Charging Enforcement Function to maintain and manage policies in response to locally monitored conditions and requirements, in turn acting as a local Policy Enforcement Point (PEP) on devices.

Wi-Fi offload is both a necessity for MNOs and a positive boon for subscribers. The work of the Wi-Fi Alliance and 3GPP has produced solutions that enable network selection to be automated and seamless with respect to users. MNOs can deploy this solution to facilitate network selection and immediately derive a range of economic and strategic benefits.

By deploying key elements (ANDSF and PCEF) on smart mobile devices, the user quality of experience can also be taken into account, enabling, in time, richer service delivery and a wider range of options for MNOs and hotspot providers alike. Wi-Fi offload should be a strategic element of MNO planning: the distributed ANDSF and PCEF solution from GoS Networks ensures that this strategic role can be fully captured and monetised with clear and identifiable benefits for all stakeholders.

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Policy on the Device is now “Essential” Says Yankee Group

Written by GoS on . Posted in Blog

Policy on the Device (PoD) is now essential according to industry analysts Yankee Group. Mobile Network Operators have been able to understand what their subscribers are doing for a long time. But what they cannot do is to extend their reach into the RAN so that they can implement policies that act at the level of the device in order to enhance user experience. As Yankee puts it “they can look, but the couldn’t touch”.

As we have long argued, the only way to solve this problem – for the benefit of users and MNOs – is actually to go further and extend policy control not only to the RAN, but beyond, all the way to mobile and smart devices. By deploying PEP solutions on devices, the real experience of users can be taken into account. It seems the industry is starting to agree and the benefits of making devices PEPs are becoming clearer. So much so that there is now an identifiable, quantifiable market in PoD solutions – in which we play a leading role.

Yankee identifies WiFi offload as a key initial driver for the deployment of PoD solutions, largely because users are independently opting to connect to WiFi rather than cellular networks when in a fixed location – which in turn is slowing the much-feared growth in mobile data. Active PoD solutions can make the customer experience in selecting between access networks simpler, seamless and automatic.

But while WiFi offload may be driving early-stage deployments, we know there are many other use cases that are contributing to uptake of PoD solutions. These include reducing the impact of chatty applications, extending battery life, ensuring QoS guarantees and others that are addressed by the GoS Networks solution. In fact, that’s a critical point: to be efficient and effective, any PoD solution should not be limited to a single use case, but rather available as a platform to support a range of use cases that can be extended as and when required.

That’s why GoS Networks is at the forefront of this emerging technology domain. Why not talk to us and find out how we can help MNOs make the most of PoD and support an expanding range of use cases to suit changing network and user requirements?

The Complexities of Service Assurance Demand an End-to-End Approach

Written by GoS on . Posted in Blog

Service assurance is a complex challenge for operators. They have complicated networks with a wide range of solutions to manage. Until recently, the emphasis has largely been on ensuring that the network functions correctly, with trouble-shooting being a key element of that task.

Lately, more attention has been paid to the needs of the user – as their consumption of services has increased and network operators have had to wrestle with delivering services from a growing range of over-the-top providers, user experience has become a critical factor. In fact, it has a significant role in network selection and hence in both attracting new customers and retaining existing ones. Customer experience matters, as it impacts the bottom line.

That’s why, in addition to ensuring that the network is functioning correctly and adapts to growth, network operators have to understand more about how services perform from the perspective of the customer – both individually and in aggregate. Service assurance programmes must now include not only individual users but also a wider range of smart devices that have different characteristics.

Additionally as customers connect to heterogeneous networks to obtain an always best connected experience, in many cases the service is being delivered through third-party networks (for example, WiFi public access points). This can lead to a lack of visibility of user experience and whether the third parties are meeting service SLA’s.

The only way to achieve a true end-to-end view of performance from an end user perspective across any used network is to deploy solutions on smart devices that can provide data on performance and that can work to optimise conditions in conjunction with network policy platforms. GoS 360° enables network operators to understand the user experience at the level of the device and to act to ensure that it is delivered as expected. At the same time as helping to meet individual user expectations, aggregated data can provide a picture of experience across owned and third-party networks.

Service assurance is a key tool in helping protect and grow revenue and profit. Network operators must integrate the user perspective into their service assurance programmes so that they understand and keep abreast of growing user demands – and ensure that their own service guarantees are met. Why not talk to GoS and find out how we help network operators meet this challenge?