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Addressing the threat from OTT voice apps with VoLTE

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

Voice over LTE (VoLTE) and rich communications services can help mobile service providers reclaim market share being lost to over-the-top (OTT) applications.

Voice and text revenues are declining as mobile service providers (MSPs) face an unprecedented challenge from OTT communication apps such as Facebook, Instagram, and lesser known entrants, including WhatsApp and LINE. At first, MSPs enjoyed net gains because the use of these apps had generated significant data revenue. But times have changed. While still a source of revenue, these apps have begun to erode MSP’s native voice and messaging revenue.

To illustrate, let’s look at WhatsApp, who recently debuted its business model for mobile virtual network operators. In this model, WhatsApp (now owned by Facebook) provides voice and messaging services while leasing wireless services from a mobile operator. This means that MSPs are left with price per bit as their sole differentiator.

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.

How signaling saps phone batteries - and what you can do about it

By: Josee Loudiadis, Director of Network Intelligence, Alcatel-Lucent (@joseeloudiadis) What do consumers know about the effects of signaling? We pay attention to our data plan costs — such as how many bytes of data we use for Skype calls, sending...

Rankings have arrived: Mobile Apps' Impact on Networks and Consumers

By Josee Loudiadis, Alcatel-Lucent

Operators, consumers and application developers are fully interconnected in the mobile world. Yet they rarely recognize the impact they have on each other. That’s why Alcatel-Lucent has released its Mobile Application Rankings report — to increase awareness among consumers and the mobile industry and to promote app optimization. Here’s a sampling of the “blind spots” the report addresses:

LTE Growth Explosive, According to Alcatel-Lucent Data

By Mae Kowalke, TCMnet Contributor

They like it, they really like it!

The story of 4G LTE is not just the massive infrastructure upgrade, it also is one of intense subscriber adoption as the increased data transfer capabilities of 4G LTE make themselves known.

The number of active LTE subscribers jumped an average of 20 percent per month in 2013, according to a recent Alcatel-Lucent blog post by network intelligence general manager, Patrick Tan.

Alcatel-Lucent Scores Another Key LTE Win in the U.S

Whether AT&T's strategy will allow it to catch up to Verizon, which will leverage its LTE network primarily for wireless broadband access at the outset, or not, remains to be seen. What is certain, however, is that Alcatel-Lucent has cemented itself in the global market as a dominant LTE supplier.

Best practices for managing events, policy and traffic on your network

Through its two components - the Alcatel-Lucent 9900 Detector (deployed in the packet core) and the Alcatel-Lucent 9900 Central (deployed in the NOC) - the 9900 WNG delivers a significant advantage to wireless operators looking for an edge over their competition, providing advantages in a number of areas, including operations, planning, security, engineering, marketing, and revenue assurance.

What is the impact of new IP applications on wireless networks?

Depending on the specific applications and their automatic or manual refresh sequences, and the nework dormancy timer (the maximum time before a connection is automatically deactivated after non-usage), and, of course, download speeds, a recent Alcatel-Lucent white paper describers how different variations on a single application can result in significant differences in transmission loads and the number of signaling events in a one-hour actual RF airtime span.
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