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  11. Change Beckons: Moving Beyond Legacy Networks/ Traditional OSS & BSS

Change Beckons: Moving Beyond Legacy Networks/ Traditional OSS & BSS

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We discuss the following topics in this blog:

  1. Need for Revamping Traditional OSS & BSS Networks.
  2. Comparison Between Legacy and Next-Generation Networks.
  3. Benefits of a Well-Integrated OSS/ BSS Environment for CSPs.

In addition to these topics, we shall also be answering the following FAQs:

Q1. What is OSS BSS?
Q2. What is the difference between OSS and BSS?

Why Is There a Need for Revamping Traditional OSS & BSS Networks?

IP: the coveted VIP for next-generation networks!

As voice and data convergence grows stronger and also as mobile broadband expands more pervasive, SIP continues ushering a new renaissance over IP telecommunications. A rapid shift to wireless; A boom in mobility and broadband demand; extremely intense competition and shrinking market share and declining revenues with new players entering the market; Voice quickly getting replaced by richer content and applications; low-end VAS such as SMS, Caller Tunes and Ring Tones quickly giving way to a new breed of high-end VAS like P2P, online / network gaming, Video streaming / downloading, IPTV, etc.

Subscription to these is intensifying as the devices market also matures and a gamut of handheld devices become widely available with something for every pocket. Thus, the potential for better / improved ARPU seems to be rising. However, in this new dynamic service environment, QoS emerges as a cornerstone of quality delivery, subscribers experience enrichment and revenue maximization.

As the world of telecommunications continues communicating increasingly over various IP-based media, for many CSPs, legacy intelligent networks such as PSTN and IN are fated for the end of their life. It also spells the end of the road for legacy OSS and BSS, for they are not capable to provide the capabilities required by today’s IP-based real-time data applications, stringent packet handling and a large volume of network data flow.

The situation is seriously aggravated as many platforms do not find support from the vendors who made them. More realistically, it is the cost of maintaining these legacy networks, which forms the crux of the matter, especially when most telecom players are vying to improve revenue margins and remain cutthroat by optimizing their operating outflow.

How Do Next-gen Networks Match Up with Legacy Networks?

The futuristic bout – Legacy Vs Next-gen Network

Match RoundsLegacy Network Next-Generation Network
ArchitectureLayered but with vertical silos supported by different stovepipesModular, component-based platform architecture
DispositionNetwork CentricCustomer / Services Centric
Target AudienceOrdinary ConsumersWeb 2.0 Prosumers! (Content Producers + Digital Consumers)
Configuration of servicesRooted in SS7 signaling protocol or IN databasesLocated in the software contained in Softswitch or applications database
Provisioning of servicesOnly semi-automated & cumbersome too Automated service provisioning and fault management; software-driven; provisioned through discerning GUIs; simplified and highly integrated processes; over-the-air provisioning (OTA)
Average Cost(installation and new service development)Running into millions of $; prolonged deployment cycles for new servicesFar cost-effective; new services can be accommodated with utmost simplicity
Billing of ServicesBased on manageable Call usage data having only one service quality; one traffic type; fixed pricing models; batch (cyclic) billingConsiderable CDRs; variable service quality; variable traffic types (based on apps); varied pricing models (usage-based); convergent and real-time billing
Time-to-market opportunity for new servicesConsiderably long; perhaps running into several months due to the absence of standardizationVery responsive; extremely less time-to-market; enhanced scope for innovative service offerings and brand differentiation
Capability to launch a range of next-gen servicesCluelessDozens of IP / IMS based fast and rich services • Audio/video conferencing • Mobile internet • VPNs • VoIP • Fax over IP • E-mail / IMs • Video streaming • Gaming • IPTV etc.

How Will A Well-Integrated OSS/ BSS Environment Benefit CSPs?

Rejigging for the all-IP terrain While IP brought a whole new world of revenue opportunities, it came with its own set of challenges in terms of changes needed in business process frameworks, process automation & integration and planning of a service delivery platform. A series of systematic initiatives commenced by a global standards body like TM Forum since the turn of the new millennium completely changed the OSS / BSS landscape. Using TAM (application framework), eTOM (business process framework) and SID (information framework), an unprecedented perspective for delivering and managing next-generation IP-driven services got created.

By envisaging a close-knit arrangement of the following, a real-time next-generation OSS/ BSS platform ready to accelerate convergence and rich services came into being. Conclusion Both sustainability and business success hinge on having a well-integrated OSS/ BSS environment to thrive in this brand new IP era. Having the right partner that can help in bridging the traditional gaps between traditional OSS/ BSS by creating a scalable and flexible IP-focused platform is indispensable for CSPs and holds the key to long-term success.


Q1. What is OSS BSS?

OSS or Operations support system basically deals with the technological operations management side of the network. On the other hand, the BSS or Business support system deals with the business operations management side of the network. OSS consists of specialised software and hardware to monitor, analyse, configure and manage all operations activities of a network. This includes Network Configuration and Management, Service Delivery (Inventory, Activation, and Provisioning), Service Assurance, and Fault Management & Customer Management.

BSS consists of customer-facing business operations aspects such as billing, service fulfillment, revenue management, customer management, order management, and charging, etc. of a network. This includes Customer Relationship Management and Telecommunications Billing. Usually, OSS and BSS exist as a single entity for most operators helping them control costs, find new revenue streams, and enhance customer experiences.

Q2. What is the difference between OSS and BSS?

OSS and BSS differ in what constitutes their primary elements. The elements of BSS are primarily: Customer Relationship Management, Order Capture and Telecommunications Billing.

For OSS, the primary elements are Network Inventory Management, Order Management and Network Operations.

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