In today's digitally connected landscape, customers' expectations have transformed. They not only demand the latest services and fastest speeds but also the guarantee and assurance of those services. While communication service providers (CSPs) are equipped to identify network outages, dynamically responding to service quality degradation remains a challenge, especially for small and medium businesses (SMBs) seeking cost-effective solutions.
With over 145 million SMBs globally, the market potential is staggering, projected to reach US$800 billion by 2027. The vast majority of these SMBs want services that extend beyond mere connectivity to support their business objectives. Yet, many lack the budget or expertise to take advantage of high-end solutions like SD-WAN and Dynamic Multi-Path Optimization (DPMO). Enter our groundbreaking catalyst project.
Catalyst Project: A Game-changer for CSPs and SMBs
The 2022 Phase I of the award-winning Converged Access with ODA Catalyst project showcased how CSPs can slash network access costs (30%) by using the Catalyst's converged access solution to eliminate numerous proprietary OSS (operational support system) interfaces.
The Catalyst's second phase in 2023, embedded with cloud-native technology, exhibits how this streamlined solution not only optimizes technology-focused SLAs (service level agreements) but also offers a myriad of customer experience solutions. This lets operators deliver their services effortlessly over multiple access networks without being bogged down by underlying technologies. Phase II also enables CSPs to provide affordable and guaranteed services tailored to SMBs' business needs.
This is exemplified by a scenario where a video service maintains service continuity, even when an impairment or congestion is introduced through the usage of a Universal CPE with dual-access technologies. When a performance issue is detected, the video service is switched from fiber to a 5G network slice to avoid a drop in quality. To make this possible, the Catalyst uses TM Forum Open APIs at the service level, which interact with Broadband Forum, 3GPP, ETSI and ITU APIs at the technology level.
Incognito was honoured to work with champions NTT, Claro Brazil, Verizon, GCI, and VNPT while collaborating with fellow participants NaaS Compass, Future Connections, Brillio, and RedHat in this year's project.
Imagine a bustling sports event or concert in a city's center. Although such events might not cause outright network failure, they can lead to network congestion, impacting local businesses as they try to serve the public. Through our catalyst solution, service providers can promise advanced, affordable, and assured services, ensuring businesses – and their customers – are unaffected, even when demand is unusually high.
Catalyst Benefits at a Glance
- Cost efficiency: Significantly reduces the high cost of ownership by reducing the number of back-office systems and the complexity of interfaces.
- Service-centric approach: Offers solutions focusing on services, not just technology, ensuring affordability, reliability, and assurance.
- Customer delight: Fosters customer satisfaction and loyalty by maintaining SLAs even when services face impairments.
- Immense revenue potential: SMB market growth is projected to reach $800 billion by 2027 – to put this into perspective, Claro Brazil predicts a whopping 62.5 percent SMB growth using this architecture.
"We are delighted to continue our contribution to the next phase of this last-year awarded Catalyst to unlock the true potential of the ODA-based converged access model in providing a new affordable service continuity solution with SLA guaranteed connectivity for SMB customers," explains Dr. Dang Dinh Trang, Director of the VNPT R&D Center at VNPT Group.
Incognito's comprehensive converged OSS solution is made up of the following components:
- Incognito Service Activation Center (SAC) for automated service provisioning, orchestration, and activation.
- Incognito Network Monetization and Analytics Platform (MAP) for network intelligence, including 5G network data analytics function (NWDAF) and performance management data collection from fiber OLTs and BNGs using IPFIX.
- Incognito Digital Experience (DX) Solution for remote device management of 5G FWA CPEs using TR-069 and TR-369 protocols.
- Incognito Broadband Command Center (BCC) for automated DHCP network configuration.
By incorporating TM Forum Open APIs connecting to service assurance systems, a cloud-native approach to OSS, and cloud-native, physical, and virtualized network function (CNF, PNF, VNF) technologies, backed by Red Hat OpenShift, this solution offers advantages including:
- Proactively addressing network degradation, ensuring SLAs are maintained through closed-loop processes.
- Simplifying diverse technology standards and network accesses to ensure future-proofing.
- Prioritizing traffic and facilitating the integration of other access networks at a reduced IT cost by laying the groundwork for SLA-intensive IoT (Internet of Things) services.
- Contributing to energy savings to support CSP sustainability goals.
Because of how keen we are on this Catalyst, we're grateful and proud that it's been named as a finalist for three 2023 TM Forum Catalyst Team Awards:
- Outstanding Catalyst – Business Impact: This accolade recognizes solutions that redefine operational paradigms, from cost reduction and performance enhancement to improved customer engagement. Our Catalyst's unique ability to simplify complex OSS interfaces, introduce cloud-native technology, and tailor solutions to SMB-specific needs places it at the forefront of this category.
- Outstanding Catalyst – Business Growth: While conventional connectivity solutions have their merits, the ODA Catalyst goes a step further. By leveraging digital enablers like IoT, CaaS (Connectivity as a Service), and ZTP (Zero-touch Provisioning), it's positioned to spearhead unparalleled business growth and expansion. This ability to transcend traditional boundaries and offer SMBs transformative solutions makes this category an obvious fit for our Catalyst.
- Outstanding Catalyst – Sustainability and Impact on Society: As we head into the future, the intersection of technology and societal impact becomes even more crucial. Our Catalyst doesn't just provide a technological solution; it contributes to the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), highlighting its potential to forge a positive societal imprint. Energy savings, lowered greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, reduced IT costs, and prioritized traffic management are just the tip of the iceberg when considering its support of sustainability.
As the digital landscape continues to evolve, so do the demands and needs of SMBs. The Converged Access with ODA Catalyst project is more than just a solution; it's a revolutionary approach that bridges the gap between customer needs and technological advancements.