Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) today (25 February 2013) introduced its Liquid Applications innovation, which turns the base station into an intelligent part of a mobile operator’s network to serve and deliver local content to subscribers.
Since the launch of GSM in 1991, the mobile – or cellular - base station has been the part of the network that just transmits and receives radio signals to create a connection with a mobile phone or device.
Now, however, instead of just being part of a commoditized data bit-pipe, NS is turning the base station into a place where any type of content and data can not only be stored, but also take advantage of knowing where and why people are using their smartphones and tablets.
By placing useful information right at the edge of their networks, at the point where people connect, operators can deliver a far better service and increase the efficiency of their network. The new innovation is called Liquid Applications.
It allows application data to flow across mobile operator networks to base stations where it can be delivered instantly to local subscribers. For example, information about the area surrounding the base station, such as that used in augmented reality applications, or news and video content that is trending across an operators network, can be placed at the base station for instant local access to connected devices.
Liquid Applications are enabled by the company’s new Radio Applications Cloud Server (RACS). In what the company says is an industry-first, the RACS enables localized processing, content storage, and access to real-time radio and network information in the base station.
By turning base stations into local hubs for service creation and delivery, Liquid Applications helps operators offer a service experience that is local and personal. It works hand in hand with existing charging, messaging and location-based services and is part of Nokia Siemens Networks’ Liquid Broadband portfolio.
‘Liquid Applications redefines the role of the base station and will transform the mobile broadband experience,’ said Marc Rouanne, head of Mobile Broadband, Nokia Siemens Networks. ‘The beauty of Liquid Applications is in the simplicity of using information that has always been there in the network, to fundamentally change the definition of personalized service and shatter forever the perception of the network as just a bit-pipe. Liquid Applications will drive innovation and new business models across the mobile industry.’
Gabriel Brown, senior telecoms industry analyst for Heavy Reading, said: ‘Exposing applications and services to real-time network data (e.g. cell congestion, radio link quality) from inside the base station enables improvements to performance and service quality. Also placing services close to the user is a step toward creating a network architecture that prepares mobile operators for content-heavy, performance-orientated service models that will be critical to competitive advantage in the future.’
Liquid Applications is a key component of NSN’s Liquid Broadband portfolio, which also comprises end-to-end Quality of Service (QoS) Differentiation and operator Content Delivery Network (CDN). Liquid Broadband provides capabilities to intelligently deliver personalized services to subscribers.
End-to-end QoS Differentiation enables operators to prioritize mobile broadband traffic and fine-tune services according to user profiles and applications. With the operator CDN, operators can allocate network resources whenever and wherever required to control the delivery of content right down to the user device. This ensures that the content is delivered with the right priority, in the right format and at the right time.
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