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Report Highlights

Opportunities exist across a diverse spectrum of assurance and test solutions. But where can your company make a difference? Well, here are some highlights of our analysis to provide some perspective:

The Rise of Application Performance Management

Two and a half years ago a French mobile operator advertised its very popular mobile data service as “1 Mbps bandwidth for 15 Euros a month”. Today that same operator offers mobile data service without telling you what the bandwidth is. The user gets a mixture of internet access, video on demand, voice mail, and an email application.

In other words, bandwidth is no longer the issue – the carrier sells strictly on the types of services and applications that come in the mobile package.

It's a dramatic break with the past and a key reason wireless application performance management (APM) has become critical for operators. The report explains the details behind APM, the differences between monitoring synthetic vs. real transactions, and which vendors lead the market.

Deep Packet Inspection and Complex Services

What do you do when your network application operates across multiple network layers and has millions of possible points of failure? Often the only way to diagnose problems in an environment like that is to replicate that application and painstakingly investigate the problem off-line.

This is the purpose of deep packet inspection assurance (DPI) solutions that capture all packets passing a segment of the network and load them into massive data storage. The report examines the benefits and kinds of applications that especially lend themselves to DPI analysis.

Device Management is Skyrocketing in Importance

With the rise of smartphones and mobile data services, it's no surprise that device management is more critical than ever.

Device management solutions help operators sort out terminal software compatibility problems. They also track the performance of different types of handsets to determine which handsets drive traffic and which devices create more problems than they are worth.

Here the study probes the intriguing market related questions that mobile assurance solutions can help answer. In addition, the report looks at the brand new area of home device monitoring. It explains what this market is all about, why the rise of femto cells may be crucial to it, and which vendors are delivering software solutions.

Advanced Policy Compliant SLAs

The kind of service level agreements (SLAs) that make sense for enterprise customers today go way beyond the traditional assuring of network connectivity and IP network performance.

Managing enterprise compliance with “policy assurance” is the new solution frontier. The idea is to wrap an enterprise’s full set of operational, security, regulatory, and industry policies in one over-arching management framework.

Now BT is the first tier 1 carrier to offer this innovative policy assurance as a service to its enterprise customers. When BT sells telecom services to a healthcare organization, it not only guarantees network performance, but also "proves" that patient record confidentiality hasn’t been compromised across that network.

The report explains what's behind this new policy assurance category, what technological hurdles needed to be overcome, and how IP network reconciliation and service orchestration are an integral part of the solution.

Radio Network Optimization

3G networks are monitored quite differently than 2G. 3G adds a new access component, the RNC or radio network controller, which controls: QoS, authentication, handling weak transmissions, scheduling, and the prioritization of various services. It’s a dramatic change for operators who used to handle those processes in the mobile core.

As you move to 3.5G such as HSPA and 4G in LTE and WiMax, functionality moves even further out into the edge -- from the RNC to the individual base stations. The report profiles a new radio optimization solution that addresses the immense complexity of these new 3.5G and 4G QoS. issues. Mapping QoS hotspots within 100 to 200 meters, the solution offers significant OPEX improvements over traditional drive test optimization.

The report highlights the key issues in advanced wireless network QoS, showing where test/QoS solutions are lacking and which vendors are stepping in to help.