Majority of Tier One Operators Want Independent Policy Servers that Integrate with Separate Charging Systems, Finds Heavy Reading Survey
Real-World Experience, Interoperability, Flexible Rules Creation and Quick Use Case Deployment Are Key Policy Server Decision Criteria
Tekelec (NASDAQ: TKLC), the mobile broadband solutions company, today published research from industry analyst firm Heavy Reading showing that the majority of tier one mobile operators plan to integrate policy servers with existing charging and billing systems rather than deploy pre-integrated policy and charging systems from a single vendor.
The report, “Policy, Charging & Billing: What Tier 1 Operators Want,” finds that “scaling pre-integrated solutions based on proprietary interfaces between policy and charging may be a stumbling block here, especially if it entails high professional service costs.”
Other key results show that:
- Nearly 70 percent of tier ones said they will use the policy server (a policy and charging rules function, or PCRF) to perform some charging or rating functions.
- Tier one operators have run into significant challenges implementing online charging for data. For example, almost 60 percent cited higher costs due to customization and professional services.
- Use of the 3GPP-specified interfaces is the most popular option for initial integration of policy and charging.
- One of the most important policy server buying requirements is real-world experience integrating with third-party charging systems.
“Only a minority of the Tier 1 respondents said they would deploy pre-integrated policy and charging solutions in the medium term,” said Graham Finnie, chief analyst at Heavy Reading and author of the report. “The majority is seeking good interoperability and integration of policy with independent charging systems, using standardized interfaces wherever possible.”
The survey also shows that more than one-third of service providers believe that the new Sy interface, due out in 2012, will simplify integration between policy servers and charging systems.
“Service providers want maximum flexibility, scalability and signaling efficiency in their policy servers, coupled with an easy-to-use rules engine and analytics to create and evolve services. An independent, best-of-breed policy server is the best way to meet these requirements,” said Doug Suriano, chief technology officer at Tekelec. “We have integrated our policy server with charging systems across dozens of tier one operators. The release of the new Sy interface will improve integration with charging systems and eliminate cumbersome, proprietary approaches that limit scalability and increase costs.”
Tekelec sponsored the Heavy Reading survey of 30 respondents in network planning, engineering, CTO, sales, marketing, product development and customer support departments for service providers with revenues above $1 billion. All service providers have deployed or are in the process of deploying a PCRF or other standardized policy server.
Tekelec’s intelligent mobile broadband solutions enable service providers to manage and monetize mobile data and evolve to LTE and IMS. We are the architects of the new Diameter network, the foundation for session, policy and subscriber data management. More than 300 service providers use our market-leading solutions to deliver cloud, machine-to-machine and personalized services to consumers and enterprises. For more information visit www.tekelec.com.