The world is on the move. New concepts such as Network Function Virtualization (NFV) or Internet of Things (IoT) are taking hold while the mobility of consumers and the devices they use reaches previously unfathomable levels.
Big data is coming. For Mobile Network Operators (MNO), market requirements change as the increasing number of subscribers, machine users and services on offer multiply into vast volumes of data – static as well as variable, user-specific data that has to be stored and analyzed.
Traditional relational database and directory systems are increasingly not up to the task and need to be replaced, driven by cost as much as by technology:
- Scaling existing database structures by a necessary factor of 10 and higher is simply too time-consuming and too expensive.
- Storing more and more static user data and variable transaction information in separate databases also significantly increases costs.
- Requesting various items of data from different sources is becoming increasingly complex as the number of users grows.
- Data silos make it difficult to comprehensively view the data, and make individual evaluations time-consuming and cost-intensive.
To address these challenges of MNOs, Siemens Convergence Creators has developed the Siemens Common Repository (SCR), the first telco-grade database system extendable to almost any needed size while under load.
The Siemens Common Repository consolidates multiple types of data
A ground-breaking approach for new market requirements
SCR’s ability to integrate any amount of new users lightning fast is based on two main concepts:
- Database storage in memory instead of on hard drives.
- Revolutionary cellular data memory architecture allowing the system to manage resources and match required memory with demand in real-time during operation.
Overload and errors in individual nodes are handled automatically, minimizing down times and increasing availability. Simultaneous linking of many applications with logically separate views and methods for accessing all session and subscriber data is also supported.
Converged data storage for the MNO
SCR today is designed as a central system for the latest generation of modern mobile communication networks (3G, 4G/LTE, 5G). In principle, it manages all data types at a logical point, including but not limited to persistent subscriber data of MNO customers, session data of ongoing data and voice connections, data volumes consumed, identification and access status of devices (M2M, IoT), location and mobility information.
It acts as a back end for storing static and dynamically changing data for any elements of the core network (Packet Core from 3G) and EPC, (Evolved Packet Core from 4G), such as HSS, HLR, PCRF and AAA, other elements of IMS; and MME, as well as all kinds of packet gateways. In the next step, integrating new elements – from the IT or billing environment, for instance – will facilitate further consolidation and cost savings. It is also common practice to use the system for other wireless (e.g., WiFi) or wired networks (xDSL, cable network) and inevitably so when converging the management of mobile and fixed networks.
Some numbers regarding SCR’s underlying architecture:
- Designed to use up to 1 million CPU cores (virtual or physical)
- Processing capability of up to 1 billion entries and 1 billion transactions per second, depending on the type of data (subscriber, M2M devices, sessions, other types)
Boosting time to market for new offers
SCR enables new services, for example by utilizing specific user data or by easily combining user and other data from a wide range of applications. This includes running big data analysis on all stored data.
The system can automatically provide and assign SIM cards or soft SIMs for additional marketing options.
System upgrades are completed in only a few days instead of lasting for months on traditional database systems. SCR supports not only LDAP and SPML but also other protocols such as Diameter and an API, making it easier to plan and customize the system. SCR is fully standard-compliant, can thus be integrated into existing systems quickly and without problems, and is open to further expansion.
Safe and transparent setup and operation
SCR stores all data redundantly in a highly distributed memory system. This, together with the automatic error handling, is essential for the reliable and safe operation.
For a professional setup when going from old to new, Siemens Convergence Creators offers its SCR customers active data migration assistance from planning to implementation.
The system is operated via an intuitive graphical user interface which permits rapid modeling of data and client views as well as comprehensive live system monitoring.