END-TO-END SERVICE ASSURANCE STARTS AT THE NETWORK
The future of business and residential communications and entertainment is based on the convergence of IP-based voice, video and data services. Both wireline and wireless service providers are transitioning to next-generation IP/MPLS networks. These next-generation networks provide the foundation for converged services, such as voice-over-Internet protocol (VoIP), IP video, enterprise connectivity and metro Ethernet.
Providers see many benefits in transitioning to next-generation networks, including lower capital and operational expenses, a more efficient delivery of dynamic service packages that increase the (ARPU), and less customer churn. However, providers face new service management challenges as they must focus on service quality and meeting high customer expectations. Adding to these challenges, providers increasingly need to monitor the performance of each service across the network to validate they are meeting technical, business and customer needs, and to ensure that the interaction of these revenuesensitive services are properly managed and adjusted to accommodate demand and service anomalies.
To succeed, providers have to differentiate their service offerings on quality, rather than merely competing on price. End-to-end network and service visibility is a requirement for meeting performance and quality objectives and ensuring stringent SLAs. Without the necessary visibility, providers are at serious risk for crippling service degradations and outages, which lead directly to an escalation in customer care costs, eroding profit margins, increased customer churn and severely damaged reputations.
The network core is the heart of the service delivery network and where successful providers’ service assurance strategies start. To effectively guarantee end-to-end SLAs and meet customers’ requirements, providers must implement a service assurance solution that provides visibility from the provider edge and to end-users, while allowing segmented views of service quality for problem isolation. By continually monitoring the performance and quality of real-time IP services, and not just the physical network devices, EXFO Service Assurance’s EXFO NGN provides the most effective service assurance solution.
With EXFO NGN, providers can continuously collect, correlate, analyze and visualize critical quality of service (QoS) and quality of experience (QoE) data from the network core to the customer endpoint for capacity planning, verifying service turn-ups, and identifying, diagnosing and quickly resolving network as well as service performance issues before customers are impacted—thereby guaranteeing quality.
NETWORK AND SERVICE PERFORMANCE MONITORING
EXFO Service Assurance’s highly scalable and modular converged service assurance solution is designed to support the most demanding service provider networks. Leveraging a comprehensive family of measurement sources (EXFO Verifiers), as well as third-party devices and industry standards, it provides 24/7 network and service performance monitoring.
The EXFO NGN software module performs continuous, proactive monitoring of the network core, extended Ethernet and IP networks between partners and customers as well as data services, including e-mail, web-based applications, file transfers, etc. With EXFO NGN, providers have the required visibility into their network and the service performance and quality to prove service-level objectives. EXFO NGN evolves network monitoring and engineering functions from a break/fix reactionary method to a proactive approach, enabling early detection and quick resolution of service affecting issues.
When layering additional voice and video services on the service delivery network, providers can also seamlessly implement the optional EXFO Call and EXFO Vision modules, respectively, to monitor the performance and quality of all of their converged IP services from a single, unified platform.
TROUBLESHOOTING AND PROBLEM ISOLATION
Starting at the core and moving out to the edge and then to customers’ endpoints, EXFO NGN allows providers to establish strategic points of demarcation that can be used to quickly identify and isolate problems. By continually monitoring critical key performance indicators (KPIs), such as availability, latency, packet loss and jitter, providers can set thresholds and alarms to alert them of potential service degradations and indicate where in the network they are occurring. EXFO NGN collects this information from EXFO Verifiers, other devices and industry standards, such as 802.1ag, Y.1731 and TWAMP, to isolate problems through network segmentation and provide a cost-effective method of measuring service quality. With EXFO NGN, providers have the information they need to significantly improve MTTR, reduce trouble tickets, and provide more effective and efficient customer care.
NETWORK CAPACITY PLANNING AND TURN-UP VERIFICATION
EXFO NGN enables providers to proactively monitor and baseline network traffic patterns, throughput and link paths to ensure new services can be properly supported over next-generation networks. When the service goes live, providers can also use EXFO NGN to conduct on-demand and scheduled tests to generate instant “birth certificate” reports for turn-up validation and detailed troubleshooting results when a problem is identified. This affords providers the assurance that the service(s) worked as promised from the onset and provides a benchmark for future potential service issues.
SERVICE LEVEL MANAGEMENT
When providers leverage best-effort data delivery systems such as Ethernet for their services, real-time SLAs are a requirement. The EXFO NGN module feeds the EXFO Worx correlation and analysis software engine with the performance and quality information to produce the advanced analytics and visualization (real-time dashboards, historical reports and customer portals) to manage and continually prove SLAs. Reports address the needs of a broad audience from technical to executive levels to provide the business intelligence required for the organization to be successful. With EXFO Service Assurance delivering high-level, at-a-glance, audience-appropriate reports, deep diagnostic capabilities, and customer facing portals, providers can simplify SLA management as well as provide customer visibility into their SLAs.
The open architecture of the solution also allows providers to seamlessly integrate this award-winning converged service assurance solution with their existing operational support systems (OSS) and business support systems (BSS) to provide a complete unified view of network and service performance.
EXFO Service Assurance offers a suite of monitoring options to provide effective, end-to-end service assurance.