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Vodafone unveils new trans-EU network performance platform

Developed with Google Cloud, Cardinality.io, Vodafone’s UPM replaces dozens of legacy network performance tools

Vodafone has announced Unified Performance Management (UPM), a new network performance platform which it says is being deployed across 11 European countries where the telco operates mobile services. The company promises customers that they’ll have “a consistently faster hand highly reliable mobile experience in Europe” as a result of the deployment.

Vodafone said the cloud-native platform will be used to monitor, manage and improve its entire pan-European mobile network in the years to come. The system replaces more than 100 legacy network performance applications, gathering eight billion datapoints from network sources. Vodafone calls that “a single source of clean data in the cloud” which can be analyzed and acted on.

The ultimate purpose of the new platform is to help Vodafone manage capacity more effectively, optimize, troubleshoot and improve customer experience. But more importantly for Vodafone’s long-term 5G strategy, it’ll also accelerate its efforts to deploy new 5G and edge computing services. 

As you may infer, this Euro-centric effort has been made to comply with EU data security legislation. Data is secured in on-promise data lakes in Europe, said Vodafone.

“All data is stored within Vodafone’s own on-premise data lake on servers in Europe. Data will be protected with appropriate state of the art security and privacy protections such as encryption, anonymisation, pseudonymisation and aggregation and will be accessible only by authorised users,” said Vodafone.

The system’s Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) algorithms will help Vodafone detect and block fraudulent or suspicious caller across the whole content, it claims. 

“It will underpin Vodafone’s pioneering work in smart planning across its entire European footprint — a method of using key network metrics to prioritise upgrades whilst significantly reducing the cost of maintaining and extending its networks,” said Vodafone. 

Vodafone works towards 100% network automation

Vodafone recruited Google Cloud and data analytics specialists Cardinality.io to create the platform. Part of the company’s five-year network digital transformation, this performance platform will enable the company to be much agile and effective at managing network outage incidents and natural disaster recovery, handling peak load activity and manage the energy consumption of its networks more efficiently, Vodafone said. That five-year plan will result in full network automation, according to Johan Wilbergh, Vodafone CTO.

“As the needs of our 300 million plus mobile customers evolve so will our network using this new platform. It is a global data hub that gives us a real-time view of what is happening anywhere on our network, uses our global scale to manage traffic growth cheaper and more efficiently as customer data consumption grows by around 40% per year, and supports the full automation of our network by 2025,” he said.

Vodafone said it has already seen major network and IT incidents fall by nearly 70% this year as it simplifies and digitizes core network operations. It claims that within “a few years” it’ll be able to up that resolution rate to 80% without human intervention.

“In turn, this is freeing up Vodafone’s expanding technology workforce to develop new products and services 50% faster, cheaper and at scale,” it said.

ABOUT AUTHOR

Peter Cohen
Peter Cohen
Peter is Technology Editor for RCR Wireless News. His coverage areas include telco cloud and the convergence of 5G and cloud computing. Peter's background includes IT management and a decade as a senior editor at Macworld. He and his family live in Massachusetts.

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