This winter, myself and millions of other people received tablets for the holidays. When combined with smartphones, which have become standard-issue gear just as fast, these tablets are changing the way consumers use computers and the network. Whereas creation was a primary use of the computer before, with data stored on a local hard drive, tablets and smartphones have now ushered in a new era of media consumption and cloud-based storage.
This change is dramatically altering content delivery and the role of mobile broadband. Networks must change to accommodate the increased demand and be able to provide a quality user experience.
Whereas before network capacity was dictated by supply, it now is firmly driven by demand. According to a model developed by Bell Labs (News - Alert), and highlighted in the white paper, “The High Leverage Network: Monetizing the Network with Personalized Services, Applications and Content,” mobile broadband demand is expected to grow between 45 to 85 times growth through 2016. This far outstrips the expected growth in supply during the same interval, which Alcatel-Lucent (News - Alert) predicts to be only 10 to 30 times growth.
Clearly network capacity must be expanded and better network intelligence must be used to meet the demand.
“Operating expenditures (OPEX (News - Alert)) have increased as service providers build out and transform their networks to increase capacity and cope with demand,” according to a recent paper by Alcatel-Lucent. “The result has been pressure on capital expenditures (CAPEX) to control operating profits. To solve the declining ARPU problem, we need to unlock the value and monetize the network.”
The two ways the paper lays out to meet this challenge is through a superior customer experience that offers differentiated and personalized services, and through enabling users to connect multiple devices to their cloud applications and content anytime, anywhere.
This requires what Alcatel-Lucent calls the High Leverage Network, which allows service providers to monetize their networks by delivering personalized services and enabling cloud applications and content to be delivered to any device, anywhere, anytime. In addition, the all-IP HLN enables service providers to develop new partnerships and business models so that application and content providers can use network capabilities to deliver a better customer experience in exchange for a share of revenue.
The HLN architecture consists of the scalable, intelligent and efficient all-IP infrastructure, according to the paper. Above this all-IP layer is the Control layer, which enables basic user connectivity and session setup as well as control of the communication, content policy and charging functions. Above the Control layer are the Optimization and Decision Analytics layers: two key layers that maximize the business value of the network and enhance the customer experience.
An HLN network helps service providers offer a more comprehensive, non-fragmented and seamless offerings compared to competitive and current OTT offerings, according to the paper.
The HLN enables service providers to leverage the network to deliver personalized services and applications with the best customer experience and maximize yield by means of real-time payment and charging functions, and to analyze user behavior and make decisions that ensure and enhance the customer experience by creating and delivering personalized offers and targeted advertising based on user preferences.
“With the HLN, service providers can monetize their networks and break into new markets, such as content delivery, cloud services, and mobile marketing and advertising,” according to the paper. In fact, for more information about HLN visit the HLN Knowledge Center.
At the end of the day, better monetization enables more network capacity build out. And, more network capacity helps providers meet the growing network demand driven by products like the “magical” tablet I and others got for the holidays.
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Edited by Peter Bernstein