O2 UK has announced it is piloting a new mobile data congestion management deployment in central London, in partnership with US network management outfit Vasona Networks.
London was chosen due to its size, population and density of mobile traffic. It uses Vasona’s SmartAIR 1000 edge application controller and its SmartVISION analysis suite to identify data congestion in the network and mitigate it.
“Working with Vasona Networks on mobile traffic management and visibility is part of Telefónica’s commitment to great customer experiences,” said Tommy Björkberg, Head of Network Strategy and Programmes for Telefónica UK. “We field tested in one of the world’s most densely-populated markets to confirm the Vasona platforms’ abilities to benefit mobile data performance for our customers.”
Dana A. Cooperson, Research Director at Analysis Mason, explained why operators are tempted by such pilots. “They are struggling to support the huge and growing volume of data that their networks must support while balancing the cost to expand their networks, the revenues they receive for services provided, and the quality of service their customers perceive.
“Capacity limits in the RAN are unpredictable; they fluctuate over time based on many factors. Video traffic is particularly susceptible to RAN congestion, and long and unpredictable video start and stall times directly and negatively impact customers’ perception of service quality.
“Connecting what’s going on in the network directly with customer experience to actively manage RAN resources at the cell level will help mobile network operators differentiate in the market while also improving their investment strategies through a combination of capital investment delays and smarter targeting of network growth projects.
The pilot covers 700 cell sites in central London. While its duration hasn’t been revealed, its successful conclusion would presumably lead to a more extensive roll out of the technology across Telefónica networks.