SKT taps Accedian for analytics-based performance assurance

16 Jul 2015

Accedian Networks announced on Wednesday that SK Telecom has deployed its performance monitoring solution across its mobile network, enabling the cellco to leverage big data analytics to monitor network performance in real time.

The deployment covers 12,000 locations across the six largest cities in South Korea. SK Telecom plans to extend coverage to all sites serving over 28 million subscribers nationwide.

Accedian’s virtualized solution collects network performance indicators in real time from SK Telecom’s existing network infrastructure, as well as from Accedian’s NFV-based performance assurance modules, with a centralized monitoring solution acting as a uniform instrumentation layer.

According to Accedian, the solution provides SK Telecom with real-time QoE metrics integrated with its own performance assurance network management system and SDN controllers, which allows them to optimize the end-to-end user experience with performance trending and proactive fault management. Direct reporting to OSS/BSS allows all regions in SK Telecom’s network to monitor performance 24/7.

David Dial, Accedian’s VP of international sales, said that more and more operators are facing issues with performance assurance as network technologies and consumer behaviors evolve.

“As we see this migration to LTE, LTE-A, VoLTE, and now we’re talking about 5G, with each evolution the performance parameters of radio to support QoE for the customer become more stringent,” he told on the sidelines of Mobile World Congress Shanghai.

“At the same time when I talk to customers and CTOs and I ask them what percentage of their problems come from the backhaul, the answers are uniformly consistent: One, ‘I don’t know for sure because when we went to IP we lost visibility’; two, ‘I estimate it’s 30-40%’; and three, ‘it’s getting worse because more and more people are using the advanced capabilities of their smartphones’,” he explained. “So you have this divergence where the performance requirements are getting increasingly tougher, and the visibility of the network to support those parameters is not there.”

That’s where Accedian comes in, he said. “If you think of these performance parameters of the radio as if they were service level requirements, we can report how the performance of the backhaul measures against those SLAs by class of service.”

Accedian’s software works with any network equipment that supports performance monitoring standard RFC-5357 TWAMP (two way active measurement protocol) with no additional hardware. In cases where older legacy gear doesn’t support TWAMP, Accedian provides a plug-and-play SFP hardware module.

Dial said the deployment is key to SK Telecom’s commitment to optimizing network performance as they migrate towards the SDN-controlled networks that will deliver 5G.

“With end-to-end performance monitoring visibility, SK Telecom can align its network with its performance metrics, which gives them new levels of control,” said Dial. “They can be more proactive in finding small problems and preventing then from becoming big problems. They can get products to market faster. And they can deliver a QoE that’s consistent with the flavors of LTE service they offer.”

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