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NSN unveils network outage predictor in pre-MWC product blitz

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Nokia Solutions and Networks has launched a service that can predict potential network outages and beefed up its carrier aggregation (CA) software to enable 450MBps, amid a glut of pre-Mobile World Congress announcements.

The Predictive Operations platform was the most notable announcement in a busy week for the Finland-based company. It uses a self-learning analysis engine to investigate network data including service quality and customer experience as well as external data such as weather forecasts and social media.
 
NSN said the product can predict potential outages up to two days before they happen.
 
According to Curtis Price, Program Vice-President for Infrastructure Services at IDC, making networks more self-aware is “critical” to enhancing service quality and customer experience.
 
NSN also announced new upgrades to its Flexi Multiradio 10 and Flexi Zone Micro/Pico base stations, allowing networks to hit data speeds of 450MBps with LTE CA. The company said it is able to do this by rolling out its load-balancing enhanced Inter Cell Interference Coordination to its LTE small cell deployments.
 
NSN has been testing the new products with three operators in Korea as they look to launch LTE-A networks. Infonetics Research analyst Stéphane Téralvsaid: "In 2013, LTE-A has been launched commercially by the Korean operators and I expect a ramp-up in more markets during 2014. For wireless operators, LTE-A CA increases competitiveness as it allows for large, high data rate pipes to be created out of fragmented frequency allocations.”
 
NSN has also updated its Smart Scheduler, which it said can provide up to 30 percent faster downlink speeds at the cell edge by reducing interference between adjacent base stations.
 
It is compatible with both FDD and TDD variants of LTE. According to NSN, individual base stations that are fitted with the software will receive more than 100 percent increase in cell edge data rates and a cell capacity improvement of more than 20 percent.
 
Meanwhile, NSN has helped US carrier Sprint hit 2.6GBps throughput on its TD-LTE network. The infrastructure company used its Flexi Multiradio 10 Base Station during the test in California.
 
NSN released a new TD-LTE baseband system module for the base station, allowing networks to deliver up to 5GB of throughput through a single site. The company said because this base station is the highest capacity TD-LTE baseband, operators can roll out next generation networks with fewer base stations and fewer sites.
 
Finally, NSN has completed the world's first live video call on China Mobile's pre-commercial TD-LTE network in Fuzhou.
 
To verify the results, China Mobile set up parallel VoLTE trials across China with a range of different mobile broadband equipment manufacturers.
 
NSN completed the video call on 4 January, using its enhanced Single Radio Voice Call Continuity (eSRVCC) service. Any calls made using eSRVCC can be established over VoLTE and then handed over to 2G or 3G, meaning a call will not be lost if 4G coverage is no longer available.
 
The solution will be commercially available in March across both the TDD and FDD versions of LTE.
 
Michael Clever, Senior Vice-President of Core at NSN, commented: “Implementing VoLTE is a definite competitive advantage for operators, enabling higher spectral efficiency and lower operational costs while placing them in a position to counter the offering from OTT players. It will bring sophisticated voice-based and video-based services and high-definition voice quality to mobile subscribers. The video to voice handover is a good example of how the new technology can be seamlessly integrated with the existing mobile broadband networks.”

Read more: NSN plots course for the telco cloud with NFV, SDN announcements