& cplSiteName &

Procera Offers RAN Management Via the SIM

Sarah Thomas
8/4/2014
50%
50%

Procera is taking a unique approach to ensuring quality of experience (QoE) in the radio access network (RAN) with a solution that relies on a simple software update to SIM cards rather than expensive network probes.

Real-time RAN congestion control is high on mobile operator wish lists, according to Heavy Reading research. They want to tell, at the cell site level, when subscribers are at a congested site so they can deal with the situation. In response, hardware vendors have presented them with probes for every eNodeB, an expensive proposition and one that wasn't regarded as feasible, according to Heavy Reading chief analyst Graham Finnie. (See Radio Ga Ga: Dealing With 4G Congestion and Controlling RAN Congestion: The Experience Is Everything.)

That's why Procera Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: PKT) has developed a customer experience management (CEM) product, a new area for the deep packet inspection (DPI) vendor. The product, called RAN Perspectives, is a small applet that can be pushed over-the-air to any SIM card, and which then sends location and quality-of-experience data back to Procera's PacketLogic DPI engine. It's a design the vendor believes is more cost effective and comprehensive than alternatives. (See Procera Adds to CEM Portfolio and Vasona Wins Cellcom as a Customer.)


Want to know more about service provider IT (SPIT) developments? Check out our dedicated SPIT content channel here on Light Reading.


Procera VP of Global Marketing, Cam Cullen, says the tool will use SMS to relay real-time location and RAN QoE metrics that go beyond traditional KPIs, such as signal strength, to help operators deliver a better experience, launch service offerings, and reduce support costs. (See Procera, Skyfire Team for Network Optimization.)

"We can get a picture of the network from the subscriber point of view, as well as using our classic DPI technology for network analytics inside the infrastructure," Cullen says. The applet can run on any device with a SIM, including Internet of Things devices, and is under the operators' control, since they own the SIM.

Procera also notes that unlike other products that collect subscriber usage and personal data, RAN Perspectives only tracks 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) standards-related information in the network, and is focused solely on improving user experience, an important consideration in this age of heightened privacy concerns. (See AetherPal's Device Diagnostics Spawn New Uses.)

At launch, Procera is offering diagnostics for customer care and congestion management, network analytics, location-based services, and crowd-sourcing capabilities to minimize the need for drive testing. In any instance, the operator would alert their customers before installing the applet and activating the service, making it an opt-in capability that comes with the benefit of improved service. (See Procera Beefs Up Network Analytics.)

Heavy Reading's Finnie applauds the service for being relatively straightforward to implement and, in principle, much less costly than hardware-based network probes. The problem Procera might run into, he says, is that operators may not yet be ready to invest. They may be feeling the squeeze to improve performance, but the business case is difficult to make, Finnie says, especially since this a proprietary approach in a standards-happy industry.

"Operators tend to be keen on the idea of using stuff that's standardized, rather than proprietary," the analyst says. "The sales cycle could be pretty long judging by other vendors that find it difficult to get from initial interest to actual contract. But Procera has a pretty good user base, all of whom they can go to and position this as an additional product."

Procera is doing just that: In fact, Procera decided to move beyond DPI and into CEM because its operator customers in Europe were asking for it, Cullen says. RAN Perspectives is currently in beta testing with operators in Europe and Asia-Pacific, and will be generally available in the first quarter of 2015.

"In markets where penetration is high, they believe that fundamentally having a better network will help them keep more customers and [also help] in stealing them from their competition," Cullen says. "In emerging markets, it's about optimizing how they spend their money," adds the Procera man.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(1)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
From The Founder
Light Reading today starts a new voyage as part of a larger Enterprise.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Interviews
Fixing IoT Security Is an Ecosystem Challenge

12|9|16   |   05:34   |   (0) comments


Level 3 Communications' Chief Security Officer Dale Drew says service providers, manufacturers and even consumers must combine to halt massive DDoS attacks using IoT devices in botnets. The solution he has in mind includes reputation-based routing by the service provider but also more secure endpoint devices and greater consumer awareness.
LRTV Interviews
Cox Clears $2B in Business Revenue

12|8|16   |     |   (0) comments


Cox's Jeff Breaux discusses how the third-largest US MSO will reach the $2 billion revenue mark this year and plans to hit $3 billion by 2021
LRTV Interviews
Can Cable Climb Upmarket?

12|7|16   |     |   (0) comments


Carol Wilson and Alan Breznick assess cable's prospects for winning more enterprises in a landscape rocked by corporate M&A activity.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
TalkTalk Exec: Find Your North Star at Work

12|7|16   |   3:38   |   (1) comment


Women need to find their purpose, a professional North Star, and create a personal board for themselves, according to Alex Tempest, director of partners at TalkTalk Business.
LRTV Interviews
Verizon: Beware Unknown Unknowns

12|7|16   |   04:58   |   (0) comments


Chris Novak, director of the Verizon Enterprise Solutions Risk Team, explains that enterprises who don't conduct a thorough audit of their assets often leave some things unprotected because they don't know they exist. Many times these unprotected assets are part of corporate M&A activity but left unshielded they can become a hacker's playground, he tells Light ...
LRTV Interviews
ETSI's CTO Talks NFV, 5G & NGP

12|5|16   |   09:45   |   (0) comments


Adrian Scrase, CTO at standards body ETSI, talks about the various initiatives and specifications developments related to NFV, 5G and NGP (next-generation protocols) that will underpin next-gen networks.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Korn Ferry Consultant: How to Find, Cultivate & Be the Best Talent

11|30|16   |   4:10   |   (2) comments


Erin Callaghan, a managing consultant for Korn Ferry Futurestep, shares strategies for companies to improve how they recruit and for women to ensure they don't get lost in the pipeline.
LRTV Custom TV
We Can Make the World More Sustainable

11|29|16   |     |   (0) comments


GeSI is a global e-Sustainability Initiative organization bringing together 40 big multinational companies around the world. According to GeSI's report, information and communication technology can make the world more sustainable. Luis Neves, chairman of GeSI, shared with us his opinion at Ultra-broadband Forum (UBBF2016).
LRTV Custom TV
Finding a New Way to Engage Customers & Drive Revenue

11|29|16   |     |   (0) comments


Mobile revenues are declining. Digicel, a player in the Caribbean telecommunications/entertainment space, has found a new way to engage customers and drive revenue. John Quinn, CTO of Digicel, shared with us its story at Ultra-broadband Forum (UBBF2016)
LRTV Custom TV
Do You Really Need Gigabit Infrastructure?

11|29|16   |     |   (0) comments


Altibox is the biggest fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) player and the largest provider of video and TV in Norway. They started out with zero customers in 2002. Now they have close to half a million households and companies attached to their FTTH business. Nils Arne, CEO of Altibox shared with us their story and insight on 5G at Ultra-broadband Forum (UBBF2016).
LRTV Custom TV
BTís Openreach Strategy & Its Updates in 2016

11|29|16   |     |   (0) comments


A lot of developments at Openreach this year in terms of strategy and planned investments. Peter Bell, CIO of Openreach BT, shared with us the updates of Openreach at Ultra-broadband Forum (UBBF2016).
LRTV Custom TV
ITU: The Broadband Is Our Future

11|29|16   |     |   (0) comments


At Ultra-broadband Forum, Houlin Zhao, Secretary General of ITU, discussed how important it is for countries, companies and everybody to be working together to help to build the broadband and digital economies (UBBF2016).
Upcoming Live Events
May 16-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Hot Topics
Cable Nodes Becoming a Choke Point
Brian Santo, Senior editor, Test & Measurement / Components, Light Reading, 12/5/2016
Consolidated Snaps Up Fairpoint for $1.5B
Iain Morris, News Editor, 12/5/2016
Small Arctic ISP Caches Netflix in New Way
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 12/7/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Eyal Waldman, CEO of Mellanox Technologies, speaks to Steve Saunders, CEO of Light Reading, for an exclusive interview about the 100 GB cable challenge, cybersecurity and much more.
Join us for an in-depth interview between Steve Saunders of Light Reading and Alexis Black Bjorlin of Intel as they discuss the release of the company's Silicon Photonics platform, its performance, long-term prospects, customer expectations and much more.
Animals with Phones
A Mobile Safari Click Here
Literally.
Latest Comment
Live Digital Audio

Even when there's a strong pipeline of female talent in the comms industry, it tends to leak all the way to the top. McKinsey & Company says women experience pipeline leakage at three primary points: being unable to enter, being stuck in the middle or being locked out of the top. Each pipeline pain point presents its own challenges, but also opportunities to stop the leak. Wireless operator Sprint is making a conscious effort to improve its own pipeline from new recruits to the C-suite, and it wants the rest of the industry to do the same. In this Women in Comms radio show, WiC Board Member and Sprint Vice President of Enterprise Sales Nelly Pitocco will give us her take on the industry's pipeline challenges. Pitocco, who joined Sprint in May and has spent 20 years in the comms industry, will also offer solutions, share how Sprint is tackling the challenge within its own organization and take your questions live on air.