Andy Huckridge, Gigamon's director for service provider solutions, explains why traffic intelligence is vital to keep data volumes from overwhelming analytic tools
Vision 2014: With the huge growth in communications traffic, how can telcos monitor, manage and secure their networks in to deliver differentiated services?
Huckridge: Mobile service providers operate in an extremely dynamic and competitive environment of technological advances and elastic consumer demand. Mobile data traffic congestion, and an inability to proactively invest in timely network optimization, can lead to customer churn and missed marketing and revenue opportunities. Service providers must consistently deliver high-quality, high-speed data to retain subscribers and maintain/increase customer sentiment.
By harnessing Big Data, service providers can better understand their subscribers and associated experiences on the network. Through visibility, they can turn Big Data into an advantage while increasing ARPU and reducing churn. The ability to exploit Big Data enabled by transactional-level visibility combined with subscriber aware traffic intelligence can represent a significant competitive advantage.
What are the major challenges caused by Big Data?
As subscribers and applications become increasingly mobile, the risks posed by the growing volume of data will also grow exponentially. Compounding the problem is the fact that video is becoming increasingly pervasive and taking up exponentially more bandwidth than legacy voice traffic. Unfortunately, network analytic tools don't get cheaper as network speeds increase, so carriers must assume the cost for transporting the data and managing the networks that carry it, while lacking the sufficient incremental ARPU for this model to work. They need to change the way Big Data is monitored to tackle this problem.
How does Gigamon enable customers to identify the "right" traffic and forward only that traffic to the relevant monitoring, management and security systems?
Gigamon's Unified Visibility Fabric provides the traffic intelligence necessary to handle the Big Data problem for the carriers. Network "TAPs and TAP" aggregation is not enough because without traffic intelligence, the amount of data simply overwhelms the tools. They cannot provide meaningful analytics when relevant packets are dropped, flows are not correlated and subscribers are getting lost along the way to the tools.