The role of the Service Provider’s telecommunications network has never been more critical than it has been since the turn of the decade. During this unprecedented time, the world has seen a total transformation in the way people go about their daily lives. Remote teleworking has become a default for many employees, school children are having lessons online and even governments have begun to legislate virtually between nations. In parallel, the availability of high-end devices like 8k connected televisions, latest 5G mobile devices are enhancing the overall end-user experience. Consequently, demand for bandwidth fueled by video consumption is really at an all-time high.

With such video traffic driving up bandwidth requirements, Service Provider executives have doubled down and are striving towards providing the best quality ubiquitous end-user experience and reduce costs and risks. Traffic congestion is typically managed by either throttling heavy users or adding more cell sites, but neither is a popular choice. Network optimization tools from Cisco can reduce congestion, improve user experience, and save time and money.

Cisco Ultra Traffic Optimization, CUTO for short can solve the challenges that many Service Provider Executives face.  This machine-learning, cloud-native solution improves user experience while reducing costs and congestion. CUTO is a cost-effective alternative to adding more cellular radio gear because it optimizes large traffic flows while maximizing radio network performance.

Take Indonesia’s digital economy for example. It’s set to almost triple from $44 billion in 2020 to $124 billion in 2025. Despite the promising figures, the country’s broadband and network coverage needs a boost which has prompted its government to establish the ‘National Medium-Term Development Plan 2020–2024’ last year with an aim to extend broadband coverage to 30 percent of households and fiber to 60 percent of districts. Their biggest challenge, in Indonesia and beyond, is that network modernization requires significant investments. It’s largely a capital expenditure-driven initiative that a recent report by Omdia expects to see continued momentum for, year on year, till 2025. Although this investment will help a telecom service provider gain influence in their markets, the reality is that margins are thin and the only way to gain an edge is to find ways to reduce costs while improving the experience of customers.

From the perspective of the many telecom service providers that we work with, CUTO is always a good investment irrespective of the maturity of their infrastructure purely because CUTO is technology agnostic and works with 3G, 4G, 5G, as well as Fixed Wireless Access (FWA). For customers of Cisco Packet Core, it is really fast and easy to implement since all that is required is a software activation on the Gateways. For other customers, it can alternatively be introduced as a standalone solution in the central Core Network locations and this provides a really short time-to-value as compared to RAN upgrades that typically require enhancements at the many individual cell sites (for example, new carrier activation, upgrade to higher-order MIMO schemes, cell splitting, site densification, etc.)

In fact, from deployments and trials across 25 different operators, it was found that in general, user throughput increased by 20 percent or more, cell sites also run faster and more efficiently, supporting almost 40% more capacity as a direct result of deploying CUTO. Exact benefits would of course vary from customer to customer, but in terms of the total cost of ownership (TCO), this translates to approximately 20% savings on investments or CAPEX deferral

For telco leaders to truly move the needle and increase revenue with greater network availability, enhance the user experience, and reduce costs, time, and risk, they should consider the benefits that CUTO can bring to their network. To understand more about CUTO and its advantages, read Omdia’s report on how to Surgically Mitigate RAN Video Pain.


Rajesh Chainani

Managing Director

Service Provider Network & Cloud APJ