Managing today's wireless networks is complex and most operators are managing several network layers using different access technologies, and almost always different bands. Nearly all operators are facing a capacity crunch and the solution is often to roll-out additional network equipment in the form of new sites of an existing or new technology. As a result, more than 100 operators have publicly announced their commitment to LTE in order to accommodate the tremendous capacity growth they are seeing. Operational efficiency is now of paramount importance as wireless operators struggle to contain costs as the network is growing alongside the capacity.
In order to achieve better operational efficiency, operators must streamline processes and consolidate their OSS/BSS software ecosystem, and they need systems that provide better integration and an additional level of automation compared to today's solutions. In the network planning arena, very little work has been done in the past to address this matter and this means that wireless operators are still — in large — relying on manual processes for many low-complexity reporting tasks (e.g. producing marketing coverage maps).
The impact is twofold. First, labor-intensive tasks are performed rarely and thus reduce their inherent benefits, (e.g. semi-annual rather than monthly coverage maps update). Secondly, the level of effort and risk of errors remain high. With Mentum Fusion, key repetitive network planning and engineering processes can be automated; effectively reducing the level of effort needed while increasing speed and efficiency. This results in engineers focusing on their most important task, deploying better networks, rather than taking on routine work. This benefits the operator in many ways including:
- Radio engineers are able to focus on what they are very good at.
- Important tasks are fully automated, resulting in a significant increase in the timeliness of the work carried out.
- Automated routine tasks will not increase operational costs (i.e. when the network grows the cost does not).
Ultimately, the wireless world is seeing opportunities in the area of automation. The 3GPP standards body has recognized automation (in the form of SON) as a way to decrease operational cost. Mentum is actively involved in developing solutions that embrace fundamental industry trends and is committed to offering innovative solutions that wireless operators need to tackle complex challenges and remain competitive in their wireless world.