As I discussed in my previous post, VoLTE is complex – it takes a lot for Mobile Service Providers (MSPs) to make it a reality and even more to make it operational. We started out by discussing Device (consumer of content) to Access (deliverer of content). Let’s continue by looking at the Access to Service (producer of content) connection.
Learn more: Use Mobile Data Traffic to Improve CX
Access to Service
With continuous successful device connections to the access network, the bearer(s) of services can be established.
First of all, you should know that what you should monitor and analyze changes, depending on how you deploy VoLTE. For instance, you could use Rich Communication Service (RCS) (which involves a lot of components to make it work – and they all should be monitored); or Voice Call Continuity (VCCC) with CSFB or SRVCC (both of which should be measured to give you great insight into how your resources are being leveraged).
In this piece, I’ll focus on a pure VoLTE implementation.
Planning for the Future
In the past, IMS deployments have been single vendor environments. However, as IMS matures, you will see more vendors be introduced as P-CSCF. The PGW anchors and provides routing to the P-CSCF to support the SIP messages that are primarily used for signaling. Diameter messages are used between the different IMS components to control the routing of each SIP message.
Read: Give VoLTE a Voice
With that in mind, you might want to consider utilizing a number of probes to help differentiate between the user and application data. Moreover, using several probes will help with efficiency and scalability.
Why Use Probes for Data Analytics?
So what are the uses cases a probe and data analytics can solve?
Aside from typical calling metrics, jitter, latency, etc., probes enable a MSP to understand things like:
- How well are the EPC and IMS working together?
- What type of AAA mechanisms are being used and how often? (This information is good for OTT partnerships with WebRTC, for example.)
- Is my Telephony Application Server working as per our requirements?
- How well is my HSS scaling under the weight of all the new transactions?
- How are the S-CSCF and SLF being used in different geographic locations?
Interoperability also presents huge challenges. Nearly any shared interface between two vendors will each have implemented its functions differently.
Marketing and network planning teams must make decisions about where to focus their resources or whether to cut operational spending. Armed with customer insight tailored around the services environment, Mobile Service Providers can ramp up efforts to ensure that customer experience remains positive. Mobile service providers can also learn what new services can be deployed with heavy uptake by the subscribers.
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To date, it appears most of the MSPs that have deployed VoLTE have relied on active testing to effectively “spot check” the end-to-end service improvements and overall performance. Very little appears to have been done to look at overall QoE across the entire customer base.