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Policy Players Prosper

Policy management specialists are picking up new business, profiting from demand, and preparing for greater demand from the mobile sector

November 26, 2009

4 Min Read
Policy Players Prosper

The policy management sector, for so long touted as an important area of development for the future, is finally heating up, driving new business deals, boosting top and bottom lines, and attracting new players. (See Policy Rules?.)

One of the factors behind the increasing activity in this particular area of asset and subscriber management is the growing pressure on mobile operators to deal with the surge in data applications usage on their networks, and that's a trend that noticeable in this round-up of the latest news from the sector's vendors. (See Policy Matters to Mobile Broadband Operators.)

  • Camiant Inc. , one of the leading independent policy management specialists, announced it had been chosen by "one of the largest global mobile telecommunications groups as the preferred provider for policy control solutions," and has already been extensively deployed. (See Camiant Boasts Mobile Operator Deal, Camiant Leads Policy Control, Camiant Studies Mobile Data Rates, and Camiant Touts Policy Server Growth.)

    Word in the marketplace is that Camiant may have extended its relationship deeper into Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD), having already found its way into the mobile giant's Hungarian operation. (See Vodafone Hungary Deploys Camiant.)

  • Deep packet inspection (DPI) specialist Allot Ltd. (Nasdaq: ALLT) has reported improved financials for the third quarter of this year. Revenues were up 8 percent sequentially and 10 percent year-on-year to $10.8 million, while the net loss of $2.3 million was much improved from a year ago, though a step backwards compared with the second quarter. (See Allot Reports Q3.)

    Like Camiant, Allot has a wide-ranging deal with an unannounced Tier 1 mobile operator that, to date, has resulted in orders worth $12.6 million. It also tracks mobile data trends on an ongoing basis. (See Mobile Data Matters and Allot Gets Wireless Wins.)

    The fate of Allot and other DPI players is worth noting because packet analysis –- in particular the ability to identify, in real time, particular applications running over a network –- plays a key role in policy management strategies. As Heavy Reading chief analyst Graham Finnie puts it: "DPI and policy control are two sides of the same coin -– they are complementary."

    That's why Allot partners with policy specialists such as Camiant. (See Allot, Camiant Hook Up.)

    Rival DPI player Sandvine Inc. is also experiencing an uptick in the market, having reported improved revenues for its third quarter. It noted: "The emerging wireless market generated record revenues and was the largest contributor to total revenues and customer wins." (See Sandvine Reports Q3.)

  • Another function closely tied to policy control and DPI is charging. Redknee Inc. (Toronto TSX: RKN) is one of the vendors that has packaged together all three capabilities in a platform it's marketing to mobile operators around the world, principally in emerging markets. (See Redknee Preps Shopping Spree.)

    The Canadian company has just reported its full year financials, which show an increase in revenues to $53.3 million, and an operating and net income compared with last year's losses. The improving results are in part the result of a strong management focus on building customer relationships that deliver recurring revenues. (See Redknee Reports Q4, Full Year.)

  • Equally as focused on the mobile sector is Starent Networks Corp. (Nasdaq: STAR), which has just announced the addition of an integrated Policy and Charging Control Solution to its mobile packet core platform. (See Starent Intros Policy Solution .)

    The vendor, currently in the throes of being acquired by Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), believes it has an edge over other mobile core infrastructure providers that deliver separate platforms for DPI and charging capabilities, an architecture that adds to signal delay. (See Cisco to Buy Starent for $2.9B.)

    Starent says it has developed its own DPI capabilities (announced earlier this year), and is sourcing the required policy control and charging capabilities from technology partners. Camiant and Bridgewater Systems Corp. (Toronto: BWC) are two of its policy partners, while Starent is prepared to integrate charging functionality from "pretty much anyone," says head of product marketing John Morgan. (See Starent Adds Smarts to LTE Core and Bridgewater Reports Q3.)

    — Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

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