Next Generation Communications Blog

Mobile fax? Why do you need that?

Fax is an enduring technology. While you may think that fax is declining, some reports show that the market is actually...

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We ask the experts: How can exceptional QoE be achieved in VoLTE networks?

By: Jean Jones, Director, Wireless Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent

What does voice over LTE (VoLTE) offer your subscribers? Better voice quality, including HD voice. Rich communications with messaging and video. And whatever inventive applications you choose to introduce. In other words, VoLTE can provide a superior quality of experience (QoE) for subscribers and give you a competitive edge — particularly when your service operates at its best. 

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In my last blog[CCE1] , our experts explained why an end-to-end strategy is the key to maintaining peak VoLTE performance. Now we’ll look at how this strategy gets put into practice to optimize real-world service offerings. The information here is based on interviews with Luis Venerio who works with our VoLTE Readiness Services team. And his observations come straight from his experience on VoLTE deployments that serve millions of subscribers.

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Wearable Tech Expo 2014 Kicking off in NYC

My team is at the Jacob Javits Center setting up for Wearable Tech Expo 2014 which will take place Wednesday and Thursday...

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When Does WebRTC Need a Media Server? Reason #7

Tsahi Levent-Levi’s white paper, “Seven Reasons for WebRTC Server-Side Processing,” details a variety of WebRTC-related scenarios that necessitate a media server....

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How signaling spikes affect networks: 3 real-world examples

By: Josee Loudiadis, Director of Network Intelligence, Alcatel-Lucent

Data and signaling growth are usually good news for network operators, since growth often translates into higher revenues. But when growth is averaged over a month or quarter, the daily highs and lows of network activity are smoothed out. And signaling spikes remain hidden within the averages. These spikes can overwhelm available signaling capacity, which impairs the customer experience, as well as the operator’s reputation.

What happens when a spike occurs? Typically, a CPU Overload alarm appears on various mobile nodes. And the Network Operations Center (NOC) immediately starts praying that the burst is short-lived and doesn’t go over maximum peak-rate capacity. Because when that happens, all consumers are denied service access. Then, the process of identifying the source of the problem begins. This can be arduous, because it often involves applications completely out of NOC control. And the issue can’t be resolved easily without solid network analytics that enables engagement with application and device developers.

That’s the reason signaling information is a crucial part of the Alcatel-Lucent Mobile Apps Rankings report and why LTE World 2014 devotes an entire pre-conference day to the topic. It’s also why this blog offers a closer look at how some real-world disruptive signaling spikes got started — and were finally resolved.

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The Expanding Channel Programs

Not only do I see more cloud service providers looking to the channel for sales, I see other channel programs expanding....

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When Does WebRTC Need a Media Server? Reason #6

In a recent blog about the current state of WebRTC, I mentioned that readers should check out an excellent white paper...

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Alcatel-Lucent: Consumers Want Access to Same Content on Any Screen, Around the Clock

By Ed Silverstein

Consumers today want to be able to have a multi-screen experience. They also want to have simplified content delivery. Combining both of these needs, there are some key ways that service providers can improve the users’ multi-screen experience.

Alcatel-Lucent says that consumers just don’t want to be able to watch content.

Improve Visibility into Operations Using Business Activity Monitoring Tools

By Tracey Schelmetic

It's a challenge every business faces eventually: keeping your customers during an economic downturn. You may not have the marketing budget to prospect for more customers, and you may not have the budget to launch new, flashy product lines, but you have no choice about one thing: you need to keep the customers you have. In other words, you need to figure out how to prevent churn, oftentimes with fewer human and technology resources than you had just a few months ago.

So what advantage is it that the companies who manage to do just this have over the companies that don't? Best-in-class performance, according to a white paper from Aberdeen Group.

Alcatel-Lucent: Market 'More than Ready' for Multi-screen Services

By Susan Campbell

Consumers today are carrying multiple devices and service providers need to develop solutions that enable rich content delivery and applications across all of those devices if they hope to be able to effectively compete in this market. This is especially true as the line between traditional broadcast TV and online multimedia content is quickly blurring.

Today’s consumer wants to be able to watch TV and video content without having to be tied to a fixed program schedule or the home television. Consumers are rapidly adopting more flexible viewing experiences that include connected and mobile devices, such as tablets, smartphones, PCs, netbooks and more.

Knowing the Value of Your Network Capabilities


By Tracey Schelmetic

Apps. We're crazy for them, much to the gratification of those who build them and those who sell them.

As a growing number of network providers are investing to speed the delivery of new services to an increasingly more demanding consumer and enterprise market, many of these companies are finding value in supporting the delivery of third-party applications. With the success of Apple's App Store, consumers are demanding more and better apps, and the network companies are very happy to provide them. Mobile network providers serve over two billion subscribers collectively — nearly half of the global mobile subscriber base, and that number is expected to go nowhere but up. Network companies are eager to increase their time-to-market, and spur innovation, but competition is fierce and the terrain is new: companies need to truly understand what the best approach to take in application development is.



There are a lot of options, and most network providers differ from one another greatly in their approaches to developing and marketing apps: some providers are investing heavily in recruitment and training of developers; some are tapping into existing developer communities; some appear to be courting the media’s attention, whereas others are holding closed beta tests of their application enablement platforms.


How Smart Metering Technology Can Help Enterprises Lower Energy Consumption

By Beecher Tuttle

In today's volatile economic times, enterprises and SMBs of every size and stature are looking to lower operating costs to improve their bottom line. To achieve this goal, a growing number of companies have made the decision to embrace green energy solutions, which can help eliminate the incredible amount of power that is wasted each year in the course of delivering electricity through a traditional grid. These cost-saving initiatives are also being adopted by companies that are looking to become more eco-friendly.

According to a recent CIO Magazine survey, more than 54 percent of IT executives indicated that their company has already implemented environmental sustainability initiatives, with both business and social reasons in mind.

Many of these enterprises that are working to implement green energy solutions on a holistic level have turned to intelligent networks and smart metering technologies.



The High Cost of Failing to Meet Customer Expectations

By Mae Kowalke

Providers of next gen communications services often find it a challenge to meet customer expectations. Because life is so busy and fast-paced for consumers, the key to winning, serving and retaining clients often boils down to quickly and effectively responding to customer calls—especially calls originating from mobile phones. 

A recent Opus Research report authored by Senior Analyst Dan Miller explores the topic of meeting customer service level expectations, and introduces the concept of intelligent Customer Front Door (iCFD).

Miller describes iCFD as “a set of applications and technological resources that enable businesses to identify callers and quickly aggregate information about them to assist in successfully resolving their needs.”

Implementing iCFD is typically an incremental process, involving the integration of intelligent routing and self service into contact center applications.



The Eternal Challenge for Wireless Providers: Ensuring Quality with Wildly Fluctuating Bandwidth

By Ed Silverstein

With advances in mobile networks, many changes are ahead. Service providers will need to plan for fluctuations in bandwidth consumption. They also want to be able to maintain the quality of the user experience.

These changes are the result of mobile service providers moving to 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks, explains Alcatel-Lucent. But for service providers to take advantage of the benefits that IP and LTE offer, they will need to change to a business model that takes advantage of users’ needs for enhanced services and applications, says the company.

It is clear that the need is there, and it is rising exponentially.



How Can Service Providers Benefit from the Healthcare Revolution?

By Ed Silverstein

There has never been a more important time in the relationship between healthcare and communications. Alcatel-Lucent works with healthcare providers to develop a communications infrastructure that improves patient care. The company realizes healthcare operators need access to knowledge instantly and the right people connected at the right time. They have to improve responses and increase the time caregivers can spend with patients.

Healthcare providers face the multiple challenges of enhancing patient care while improving operational efficiency and ensuring clinician satisfaction.



Mobile Payments Opening Up Huge Opportunities for Service Providers

By Ed Silverstein

An increasing number of network providers are adopting new business models and embracing open development. Such activities represent new strategies to accelerate application enablement and address the growing demand for applications across consumers and enterprises.

By efficiently enabling applications and collaborating with third parties in a more open manner, network providers can establish their place as value-added participants in the emerging application ecosystem. There is no “one-size fits all” approach for network providers to accomplish these objectives. Instead, network providers will need to consider, and possibly adopt, multiple business models to reap the full benefits of the application opportunity.


Operators Must Seize Key Vertical Market Opportunities

By Susan Campbell

As a service provider, you have endured a number of changes in the recent past. You no longer can survive by simply offering voice and messaging services and consumers want so much more. You have likely had to change your business model and align yourself with key partners in order to identify opportunities and leverage your assets in order to change directions in your strategy.

Within that new strategy is the need to align yourself with proven players so you can better address the opportunities within key vertical markets. One provider who is helping service providers across the globe to re-define their strategies and position themselves for sustainable revenue generation is Alcatel-Lucent.



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