Good modelling cuts the price of mistakes
Network planning automator Infovista has announced support for Open RAN planning with version 7.7 of Planet, its artificially intelligent (AI) radio frequency (RF) planner. It allows network builders and mobile network operators to create an O-RAN in a greenfield site much quicker by accurately modelling the installation and identifying the best shape. It also works well when replacing an existing network infrastructure or, perhaps, for any telco ripping and replacing Huawei equipment. In the US it is estimated that an extra $3 billion is needed to finish the job of replacing Huawei kit from its telco networks.
Planet 7.7 also offers a new modus operandum to operators, the option to model end-to-end latency throughout the network. By measuring response times, from the core to end user equipment for both traditional and O-RAN designs, operators can understand the real levels of interaction that subscribers will experience. This dose of realism is a major step towards 5G slicing, because it measures the truth behind the guarantees of slice-specific service level agreements (SLAs) and the provision of Ultra Reliable Low Latency Communication (URLLC) services.
The launch of version 7.7 inches Planet’s AI-powered RF modelling closer to the exacting standards demanded by O-RAN. More precise modelling during the planning and design optimisation of RAN building can create significant CAPEX savings for mobile operators by either increasing RAN capacity or deferring investment in additional spectrum and radio equipment.A report, Accurate RAN Planning Saves Billions, published in July 2022 by analyst Mobile Experts, calculated that a nationwide US mobile operator could save $2 billion over a 10-year period by cutting the numbers of base stations and smalls cells needed.
Infovista’s Smart CAPEX system includes a number of improvements in the Planet Automated Cell Planning (ACP) module. Smart CAPEX gives operators the option to specify time-to-market and total cost of ownership parameters for backhaul fibre and candidate site locations. These improvements ensure Smart CAPEX provides operators with an optimal network expansion system that has much more vital detail on time and cost savings.
Planet 7.7 has improved the support it gives network equipment vendors over the latest versions of their software. These options are found in its Call Analytics Module. Planet can troubleshoot the network according to geolocated call traces. The Call Analytics Module within Planet allows operators to quickly assess a subscriber’s experience, locate common network problems and pre-emptively resolve RF issues using embedded vendor call trace processing and geolocation intelligence.
The complexity of 5G means that operators need design flexibility if they are to make the most of their existing and new RAN investments, according to Regis Lerbour, VP Product & R&D, RAN Engineering, Infovista. “Operators need to have the confidence that their network will deliver the optimal return on investment. Planet’s AI-powered, data-driven approach works on 3G, 4G and 5G networks. Planet 7.7 brings some important options,” said Lerbour.