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Sytel Reply is part of Reply, a leading Consulting, Systems Integration and Digital Services company specialising in the design and implementation of solutions, based on new communication channels and digital media. Sytel Reply UK is the company of the Reply group that is specialised in the Telecommunication, Media and Technology (TM&T) markets in the UK and Ireland.
Sytel Reply, thanks to its in-depth competence and experience, boasts a team of highly skilled professionals with a mission to support clients in managing technology and business disruptions, which they are facing during business transformation and technology innovation programmes.
Mobile networks have undergone significant changes in the past decades, seeing various advancements in speed and technologies ranging from GSM to 4G networks. With all of these changes the Mobile Telco Architecture remains composed of three very distinctive areas: Access, Core and Services. The purpose of Telco-over-Cloud is to gather all the different components of the mobile telco architecture belonging to each of these three areas, and move them inside a cloud compute environment.
Traditional Mobile Telco Architecture. A mobile telco network is composed of three main areas: Access, Core and Services. The Access area is where end-users are directly connected to the Telco network, usually through antennas. The Core is where the processing of voice and data traffic, as well as mobile management, takes place. Finally, the Service area is where all the services such as SMS and MMS Centre, NAT/PAT, Firewalls and many more are hosted.
An example of a traditional mobile telco architecture is illustrated in the Figure below:
The traditional architecture is very static. Each component is physical, usually implemented with dedicated, specific and expensive proprietary hardware. This is often designed and provided by specialised hardware vendors, who by closing their platform make interoperability more difficult. In addition to this, each area of the network is not only logically separated, but also physically segregated as well.
Telco-over-Cloud. A more flexible and agile network for communications providers can be obtained by using the principle of Telco-over-Cloud (ToC) through the use of new technological advancements. Firstly, the Telco-over-Cloud architecture takes advantage of Network Function Virtualisation (NFV) principles, by virtualising communication services components and using an NFV orchestrator to control them. Secondly, all of the now virtualised components will be connected together using Software-Defined Networking (SDN) concepts and technologies, by centralising the network control plane to have full control and complete, granular visibility over the whole network from a single logical point (i.e. SDN Controller). Finally, the concept and implementation of MANO (Management and Orchestration) systems will be used to manage and orchestrate the whole environment in a holistic, policy and service-oriented way.
The figure below illustrates the evolved ToC architecture.
By leveraging technologies, such as SDN and NFV and advancing to a Telco-over-Cloud architecture, an organisation can realise benefits and opportunities that were either not possible in the past or prohibitive due to their high cost.
Overall, some of the benefits that can be realised by introducing Telco-over-Cloud in an organisation are the following:
Telco-over-Cloud is a use case for SDN and NFV, which when applied to the Telco environment will completely change the way Mobile Telco Networks are implemented. This will bring unprecedented agility, flexibility and scalability to the network, providing considerable advantages and benefits over traditional designs that are not ready for the current and future demand in mobile connectivity.
Many operators have started early implementations of this Use Case, and some examples are mature enough to be deployed in live networks.
Through its distinct competencies,
Sytel Reply assists clients in realising the benefits and dealing with the impacts of the disrupting technologies on their environments. Sytel Reply leverages real-world experience in SDN & NFV consulting for the TMT market, having worked with global Telco providers and established strong relationships with all major SDN vendors.