Accelerate Digital Transformation with the Huawei Network Digital Map


    Jul 03, 2023

    When it comes to 5G network deployment, one of the most important growth opportunities for carriers is the enablement of digital transformation for enterprises and the public sector.

    Digital transformation has become a major focus of global investment and development globally, in particular in the burgeoning economies of Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa. Seeking to take advantage of the ultra-high bandwidth, ultra-low latency, flexible and intelligent services available over 5G networks, both governments and enterprises are migrating many services to cloud.

    This trend will unleash many new opportunities for carriers to boost revenue, but also place increasing demands on bearer networks, which will play a key role in enabling a nation’s digital transformation.

    Bearer networks

    Bearer networks provide the key link between 5G radio access networks and the carrier’s core network. 5G mobile bearer networks link backhaul networks, Metropolitan Area Networks (MANs), core, and backbone networks. Typically, they include the access, aggregation, and core layers, and provide network connectivity, management, stability and security functions between the network core and edge.

    As digital transformation increases, it is becoming harder for carriers to manage traffic increases efficiently and economically without building state-of-the-art network digital O&M systems that can enable IP network automation and intelligence and in turn accelerate digital transformation for their customers.

    Network user experience and SLAs

    As industries migrate their systems to cloud, different industries will require different Service Level Agreements (SLAs). However, current IP bearer networks can neither provide agile, differentiated SLA assurance nor satisfy diverse service requirements.

    On many existing bearer networks, network quality is invisible, making it impossible to observe SLA changes promptly. Quality deterioration leads to traffic suppression and if this is not rapidly resolved, dataflow of usage (DOU) cannot be improved. This results in poor user experience and increased churn rates. For one large Asian carrier, traffic suppression was occurring on 17% of its base stations, 75% of which were located in high-value areas, hitting the carrier’s revenues hard.

    When network latency cannot be observed in real time, networks often resort to best-effort forwarding, which does not meet the differentiated SLA requirements of industry customers for several reasons:

    • O&M personnel have very limited manual analysis and optimization capabilities
    • Invisible network latency results in service detours
    • Poor user experience occurs because traffic cannot be automatically scheduled and service paths cannot be adjusted immediately when service deterioration occurs.

    That means it is almost impossible for carriers to provide continuous network service experience guarantees.

    To enable digital transformation for customers, IP bearer networks should support visualized network quality, differentiated traffic, and automated scheduling. These features can realize differentiated SLA assurance, improve service experience, and satisfy the diversified service requirements of industry customers. To relieve network congestion and continuously guarantee user experience, the network itself must be able to perceive user experience in real time and release suppressed traffic.

    Poor network reliability and security increases costs

    Backbone networks carry a large number of services. The world’s largest IP backbone network has 2,000+ NEs that carry hundreds of millions of user services. A tiny route configuration error on the backbone network may lead to wide-ranging impact on society and cause huge economic losses to carriers.

    Moreover, the longer the downtime, the more cost is borne by carriers. Recently, one network-wide service outage caused by an incorrect routing policy lasted 37 hours, affecting over 30 million customers and resulting in direct economic losses of more than US$190 million.

    Secure and reliable networks require that network configurations must be verified in advance, preventing incorrect configurations from being introduced into the network.

    Network Energy Use

    Energy prices have soared globally, making energy conservation a priority, particularly given the global consensus on green development. Devices from IP bearer networks contribute 10% to 25% to the total power consumption of all communications devices, second only to base stations.

    As such, energy conservation and emissions reduction are imperative for IP bearer networks. Without knowledge of devices’ energy consumption, network-wide optimization of energy conservation is out of the question.

    Energy consumption of the entire network should therefore be visible and manageable, enabling network-wide optimization of energy conservation.

    Huawei Network Digital Map

    Network Digital Map in Huawei’s iMaster NCE-IP is an innovative solution that manages the physical network world through a digital world. It helps carriers build an efficient, reliable, green network with the best-possible experience to help accelerate digital transformation.

    Utilising a big data engine, iMaster NCE-IP processes massive amounts of data in seconds, including multidimensional indicators such as real-time latency, bandwidth, packet loss, and energy consumption of 100,000 links on 30,000 NEs. With the help of the intelligent cloud-map algorithm it truly achieves one map for the entire network.

    digital map 616

    Key elements of the solution include:

    Differentiated service bearer: Network Digital Map operates similarly to a transportation navigation map and is capable of multidimensional network visualization, differentiated and automatic traffic scheduling, and differentiated service bearer. It helps continuously guarantee service SLAs and improve service experience.

    • Network visualization: Network Digital Map provides views of six layers — physical, slicing, network, route, service, and application, implementing multidimensional visualization from links to applications.
    • Transportation navigation app-like experience: Network Digital Map is integrated with GIS so that devices can be accurately located based on GIS information. The map also supports path pre-computation and multiple path selection policies, such as bandwidth balancing and minimum delay.
    • Automatic traffic scheduling: Network Digital Map perceives network quality in real time and automatically optimizes paths if quality deteriorates. Optimization efficiency is improved from days to minutes.

    Unique “Congestion Free” feature: Network Digital Map uses heat maps to display traffic suppression, service experience, and network bottlenecks. Users can drill down layer by layer to pinpoint congestion hop-by-hop to locate poor-QoS points. A unique range of measurement, diagnostic, and analysis tools are available so users can keep networks congestion free:

    • In-band measurement technology: detects poor QoE in microseconds and directly associates poor QoE with the network.
    • Knowledge graph reasoning: accurately locates fault points and root causes.
    • Diagnosis function: provides the accurate causes of poor QoE and network optimization suggestions.
    • Intelligent fault analysis technology: uses machine learning algorithms to reduce noise in network alarms and conduct multidimensional correlation and aggregation analysis of these alarms.

    As a result, average fault location time is reduced from hours to minutes. Customers can build networks precisely based on service experience to achieve congestion-free networks and guarantee user experience.

    Intent verification: iMaster NCE-IP’s high-precision simulation engine verifies configuration changes in complex large-scale networks. During service configuration delivery, command configurations can be simulated to identify manual configuration errors in advance. Doing so intercepts network configuration errors and prevents major network incidents.

    Green operations: To solve the issue where devices’ energy consumption remains a ‘black-box’, Network Digital Map integrates a green operations capability that makes energy consumption visible and manageable on the entire network.

    Benefits of the Network Digital Map

    iMaster NCE’s Network Digital Map has been deployed by carriers and service providers in Africa, Europe, the Middle East and South East Asia.

    NCE’s mapping feature has enabled multiple carriers to view their entire network on one map for the first time, reducing TCO by up to 30% and increasing the average DOU of ToC services by 25%. Invisible network-wide status changes can be seen in milliseconds. The typical time to optimize networks when link quality deteriorates has been reduced from two months to a few minutes, and up to 30% of suppressed traffic is released.

    What customers say

    “Huawei iMaster NCE offers whole network control capabilities, so it can provide a real global network view and real end-to-end management. NCE supports an optimal path computation algorithm to meet different service quality requirements. NCE also supports service agility to quickly meet changing business requirements.”

    Nariman Razali, VP of Technology Strategy and Planning at Telekom Malaysia

    “The network is the backbone for digital transformation especially with the diffusion of applications and mobile devices to facilitate hybrid work and leisure in addition to proliferation of Internet of Things (IoT) and 5G technologies. With the digital map it will help provide real time information helping us build a robust digital network. This feature implements intelligent network restoration and services, greatly improving efficiency and providing superior quality services for industry customers.”

    Khaled Al Suwaidi, Senior Vice President of Core Networks and Platforms, etisalat by e& UAE.

    Learn more about the Huawei iMaster NCE-IP and the Network Digital Map.

    Disclaimer: Any views and/or opinions expressed in this post by individual authors or contributors are their personal views and/or opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views and/or opinions of Huawei Technologies.


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