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Service Agility from Customer, Business, and Orchestration Perspectives

A Great Leap Forward

Evolutionary biologists talk about features that suddenly seem to burst forth and enable stunning new capabilities for life forms in the natural world. Eyes. Legs. Flight. And right now service providers have at their fingertips many new operational features that can help them become more agile purveyors of better, faster, and cheaper services. It’s no exaggeration to look at Software-defined Networking (SDN), Network Functions Virtualization (NFV), and other new, evolving technology approaches as part of a groundbreaking, evolutionary leap forward.

Service providers are not alone in embracing solutions that provide greater service agility. A 2013 Gartner study that asked enterprises to list their primary driver for cloud services found that 66% of enterprises ranked agility and service velocity above cost savings and other factors.

Understanding How and When to be Agile Read More »

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Carrier Wi-Fi Reaches the Mountain Top with Spark New Zealand

Written By Lisa Garza, Cisco Service Provider Marketing, Mobility Solutions

Not many of us would expect to get free Wi-Fi when standing on the top of the mountain at a ski resort. Spark New Zealand (formerly Telecom New Zealand) provides just that to their customers who have come to expect quality of experience everywhere, anytime.

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By deploying Cisco Service Provider Wi-Fi, Spark NZ has expanded wireless services to their customers from the Auckland city streets to the top of Coronet Peak, allowing their mobile customers to enjoy access to an additional network as they work and play. The Spark Ventures group works in start-up mode – moving quickly and putting the customer first to offer new services. Their innovation started by putting Wi-Fi in phone boxes on the street, and they proceeded to follow their customers as they grew the network footprint.

The carrier-grade Wi-Fi network is Read More »

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Make Room in the Family Car for the Family Mobile Data Plan

In another twist on monetizing the “Connected Car”, AT&T recently announced that its “Mobile Share Value” data plan – which lets customers purchase a monthly allotment of 4G/LTE mobile data that can be shared among smartphones and tablets used by family members – now allows cars to be added to the list of “devices” that can tap into the same data quota. So far, AT&T has announced 2 auto manufacturers, GM and Audi, will support the Mobile Share Value plan in this way.

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From a consumer standpoint, this makes a lot of sense. Auto manufacturers have sought to bring the consumer app and content experience into the car in some way or another – e.g., by trying to seamlessly connect a user’s smartphone to the car’s entertainment and telematics systems, and/or by creating user-friendly, non-distracting Head-Up Display (HUD) interfaces to these systems. Furthermore, Read More »

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VoLTE Policy Management to Improve Subscriber Experience and Lower Cost of Growth

Written By Alfonso San Jose, Sales Consulting Systems Engineer

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We have been hearing from our Service Provider customers like you about their interest in Voice over Long Term Evolution (VoLTE), and for good reason.  Offering VoLTE affects profitability in two ways. One is by creating a great voice experience that helps to attract and retain subscribers. VoLTE provides guaranteed quality of service and fast call-setup time. At the same time, VoLTE can lower network costs. However, VoLTE creates new demands on the network that requires a policy management solution to address. VoLTE changes the game for policy management because it imposes much heavier demands than 4G data services. The policy management solution needs to meet the following four requirements: Read More »

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Mobile Technology Spotlight: Mobile Phone Microscopes for the Developing World

Aydogan Ozcan_IMAGEThis is a guest blog contributed by Dr. Aydogan Ozcan, Chancellor’s Professor at UCLA. **

In many developing regions today, cellphones and other mobile devices have begun to play a significant role in healthcare distribution. Local networks operated by service providers allow medical staff to utilize mobile technology to treat, educate, and set follow-up appointment dates with patients. Not only can patients access information about their health, but they can meet with physicians via video over the mobile network. For regions where people may be hundreds or even thousands of miles from a local doctor or hospital, these mobile devices can become lifesaving tools.

While cell phones and other mobile devices such as PCs and tablets can serve as a source of medical information or as a virtual meeting place between a doctor and patient, the technology itself can play a more important role of improving health care in developing regions as an actual medical device. Take for example, the work of University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Chancellor’s Professor, Dr. Aydogan Ozcan. Ozcan is creating portable and lightweight microscopes that affix to the mobile phones, thus transforming them into a platform for conducting microanalysis of blood, bodily fluids and water samples. With Dr. Ozcan’s vision and technology research, cellphones can become a mobile medical lab that can diagnose life-threatening diseases. Read More »

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