6 Applications of A Data Refinery: How Telcos Can Support Generation Cloud

Posted: January 22nd, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Industry Insights | Tags: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

By Katja Kurisjärvi, Marketing Manager, Comptel

In yesterday’s blog post, I highlighted Comptel EventLink 7.0’s key features and mentioned how they comprise the foundation of our Data Refinery solution. Communications service providers (CSPs) and global enterprises alike require a strong technology base to keep up with the standards of nexterday and the high expectations of “Generation Cloud.”

Building on the Comptel EventLink core, with rating and charging components and embedded intelligence, including reporting and monitoring, our Data Refinery solution can enable real-time decision-making and action- triggering. Here are six ways that it can be put to work to drive CSPs’ businesses forward.

1. Beyond traditional billing mediation

“Comptel EventLink can, as always, manage traditional billing mediation tasks, and many of our customers use it for full-blown mediation consolidations,” says Senior Product Manager Tero Lindholm. “The platform is typically used in the OSS/BSS layer, where a Tier 0 or 1 operator with IP, fixed and mobile networks has consolidated all of its services on it.”

However, recently, new and existing Comptel EventLink customers have started to use the software for purposes other than pure billing mediation, taking advantage of its ability to process intelligent data in real time and in any format.

Typically, such cases involve complex event processing (CEP) and refining value out of “Big Data in motion” – data that originates from multiple sources in a real-time environment. The Data Refinery adds intelligence to the data handling, and enables real-time analysis, decisions and actions based on the data going through the system streams. When more hierarchical customer profiling and propensity calculations are needed, the Comptel Social Links analytics add-on is included.

2. Automated campaigns

One of the new purposes for the Data Refinery is real-time analysis with decisions and actions to enable automated campaigning processes. This is something that Comptel has implemented for operators all over the world.

“We are helping operators better understand how their customers are using their services and which offers are most relevant to which individuals,” said Tero.

The Data Refinery combines real-time usage events with a real-time understanding of the subscription and the subscriber profile and location, for example, like whether the subscriber is roaming. The Data Refinery can accumulate different usages, and combine them with real-time analysis, make more relevant offers to the end customers with optimal timing.

Understanding real-time usage is made possible by combining usage events from network elements such as PCRF or OCS (mobile) or CMTS (for IP network), and the subscription information from the CRM. The summary of each customer’s usage, according to his/her subscription and services, is shown immediately in the CSP portal, where end customers can directly monitor their service usage.

Having real-time information about data usage increases customer satisfaction and helps CSPs’ provide more suitable offers based on the real-time understanding of service usage.

3. Economical ways to managing roaming agreements

Comptel is in a good position to help operators solve roaming challenges. The company was a pioneer in rolling out roaming cost control use cases when the EU roaming regulations came into force in 2007. These regulations were intended to regulate the roaming data and voice charges imposed by operators to their subscribers, thus preventing bill shock.

To regulate roaming charges, operators are looking for more economical ways to manage roaming data and agreement processing between different roaming partners. The Comptel EventLink extension, Roaming Management, is used by 20+ operators for managing roaming billing and fraud detection, and for automated processing of partner agreements. The extension supports the TAP/RAP/NRTRDE/RAEX processing in alignment with the GSMA standards and provides full visibility into the configuration of the agreements from test phase through production.

4. Monetising OTT offerings

The Data Refinery can help monetise over-the-top (OTT) offerings. For example, in Asia-Pacific, a Tier 1 customer is using the Data Refinery to collect information related to Google Play purchases. The customer has a revenue-sharing model with the Google Play market place, and the Comptel system provides usage information to revenue-sharing platforms and to the interconnect billing system.

5. Ready for IoT

The Data Refinery is highly suitable for connecting devices and applications, and expanding usability from pure billing mediation tasks to supporting the Internet of Things (IoT) business model.

For instance, since 2013, the Telefonica Group in Europe has used the Data Refinery for processing smart metre usage traffic from Telefonica’s machine-to-machine (M2M) network elements. Smart metres equipped with SIM cards communicate readings over GPRS links, which generate events that the Data Refinery can collect and separate from mobile device usage events, providing the aggregated data to the M2M platform and assurance.

6. LTE leading the data explosion

Increased data usage is clearly visible to the users and developers of Comptel EventLink—a Tier 1 operator’s system, for instance, can now process as much as 500 TB of data daily (comparable to the daily usage of Facebook data).

To cite an example from Tero, the amount of usage events has tripled for an Indonesian customer over the past two years, and is currently hitting 12-13 billion records with each passing day.

“Indonesia is just about to adopt 4G services, and we can expect the number of usage events to multiply as 4G is introduced to tablets, smartphones and other handhelds being used in that region,” noted Tero.

In Italy, a similar explosion was seen earlier this year, where the mobile data packet usage increased by 84 percent in just five months. Not only has LTE created an enormous impact on the volume of network events, it has also increased network complexity. This is because VoLTE based on IMS technology introduces new types of network elements that require high capabilities to collect and correlate different events from different sources, in order to have properly chargeable items for billing and other applications.

It’s no wonder that operators are finding it difficult to handle customers’ appetites for ‘all-you-can-eat’ packages and are consequently moving to capped data plans. Such data plans take advantage of policy control solutions, which restrict available capacity for each customer. Customers who demand the highest bandwidth without limitations must be prepared to pay for it, bringing welcome income for operators still suffering from voice revenue losses.

Want to discuss how else Comptel EventLink 7.0 and our Data Refinery solution can support your business?

Download the presentation below, or email comptel.marketing@comptel.com for a demo.

Download

This is based on an interview with Senior Product Manager Tero Lindholm.


A Data Refinery Requires a Strong Technology Foundation

Posted: January 21st, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Industry Insights | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment »

By Katja Kurisjärvi, Marketing Manager, Comptel

In today’s rapidly changing technology landscape, it’s survival of the fittest. Only the most adaptive, intuitive and efficient software, bringing the greatest benefits to users, will survive. If the software fails to meet the expectations of nexterday, it will be replaced by more modern technologies better suited to satisfy the always-on, real-time needs of today’s “Generation Cloud.”

During it’s nearly three decades of existence, Comptel EventLink, formerly known as Comptel Convergent Mediation and MDS/AMD, has seen the winds of change with regard to customer behaviour, and has stood the test of time in the hands of many Tier 1 mobile and fixed operators.

Now, Comptel EventLink’s data management capabilities are needed more than ever to harness data coming from all directions in all industries – and increasingly, in real time.

Last autumn, version 7.0 was released to meet these new spheres of data handling with embedded intelligence, an intuitive user experience, and real-time reporting and action-triggering automation. More details can be found in our press release.

To ensure it would meet today’s high usability standards, Comptel conducted research amongst 15 operators. Evaluations of its usability, in addition to customer interviews, centred on how operators were using Comptel EventLink in daily operations, to uncover key areas for improvement and, ultimately, create a new era of mediation in version 7.0.

The latest iteration enables effortless data stream management and provides intuitive stream monitoring capabilities with clear visibility into system load and errors. Streams can be created effortlessly via drag-and-drop, using ready-installed node libraries. Everything is organised, so the most important information is quickly at hand and right in front of the user’s eyes.

To top it all off, performance has improved 200% over earlier version 6.2, and with much less hardware, making the system more than ready for network function virtualisation (NFV), which requires highly distributable systems and high availability.

“The feedback on Comptel EventLink 7.0 so far has been nothing but positive,” confirms Senior Product Manager Tero Lindholm. “The success of its extensive usability and performance investments is evident, as the first live customer upgraded to version 7.0 as soon as one month after the release.” A very fast deployment indeed!

It is this strong technology foundation that has been crucial to powering Comptel’s Data Refinery solution and, in turn, helping to deliver on telecoms operators’ and other global enterprises’ business-critical demands in real time.

Learn more about Comptel EventLink 7.0 and our Data Refinery solution below. Tomorrow, I’ll dive deeper into various applications of a Data Refinery and why it is ideal to keep up with the needs of “Generation Cloud.”

Download our Comptel EventLink 7.0 presentation:

Download

This blog post is based on an interview with Senior Product Manager Tero Lindholm.