Saliha Sezgin Alp
Access Network Architect, Turkcell
Head of Applied Research AI and Automation, PI Works
AI Use Cases in Service Assurance
Mobile operators’ quest for introducing more innovative services in an agile manner while disrupting the current business models requires a major architectural transformation. Such transformation, coupled with the introduction of new technologies to the network brings significant network complexities. A continuously evolving, complex, multi-vendor, multi-technology network can only be managed by using a high degree of automation that is powered by AI.
In 2016, Turkcell and P.I. Works joined forces to implement the most comprehensive radio network automation solution at the time. This initiative marked an important milestone in the telecom market, proving that network automation is not a hype and brings significant efficiency and quality gains.
In 2019, based on the success of the previous initiative, Turkcell and P.I. Works took a further step in network automation by combining the power of AI and automation to better understand customer behaviour and take predictive actions within the network. Implementation of such an advanced automation technology proved to deliver stronger improvements as compared to conventional automation solutions.
Image: AI and CEM Based Network Automation Project Scope
The main AI and Customer-Centric Network Automation use cases that were implemented by Turkcell and P.I. Works include:
- Predictive energy saving
- Customer-centric coverage and capacity management
- Predictive network traffic load balancing
The summary of the benefits is outlined below:
- 5% reduction in power consumption of the radio network with AI-based energy saving solution
- 17% more users experienced better streaming throughput through customer-centric coverage and capacity optimisation
- 42% more corrective capacity actions are taken by the AI-based load balancing solution compared to a non-AI solution
- 4% savings are achieved in the total Radio Access Network (RAN) CapEx through more efficient use of the existing infrastructure based on load balancing actions
Image: Comparison of AI and Non-AI Energy Saving Solutions
The goal of these projects was not only to deliver an overall increase in quality improvements and higher quality services but also to ensure Turkcell was well positioned and well equipped to execute its 5G transformation.
Why is it important to operators?
Digital transformation presents unique opportunities for mobile operators to optimise their processes and achieve successful transformation. This requires a mindset shift for mobile operators as it is more than just the implementation of new technology but a complete reengineering of the entire operations. The network is at the core of this transformation and is considered to be the most complex element. Turkcell and P.I. Works proved that the solution had shown significant improvements in service quality and network efficiency, leading to higher customer satisfaction while saving time, energy and costs for Turkcell.
P.I. Works’ AI-based automated network management solutions empower mobile operators to drive the evolution towards Zero-Touch Operations, thus enabling them to provide users with exceptional quality at a lower cost. The solutions deployed into Turkcell’s network enable more accurate and targeted network optimisation actions. The deployments were also important in the sense that they laid the foundation of a customer-aware network. Network automation algorithms can take targeted network optimisation actions for specific customer segments, which enabled the delivery of tailored SLAs (Service Level Agreements) to specific customer groups.
The solutions are customisable and can be tailored to fit in operators’ specific requirements. Additionally, they are designed in a way to fit in existing and future requirements of Turkcell’s network and mobile services.
Elif Yenihan Kaya, Access Network Director at Turkcell, said: “Mobile users demand reliable and faster internet access to enjoy their favourite applications and services. Our commitment to driving Zero-Touch evolution of Turkcell’s network is an important enabler of delivering exceptional customer experiences. By using P.I. Works’ advanced automation solutions, a continuously growing sophisticated network can be managed with the same resources more effectively. We would like to thank P.I. Works for being a trusted, long-term partner and sharing our vision.”
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