The challenge to make the right capacity investment decisions based on precise and accurate network and subscriber data will also reach to a whole new level. Conventional network planning methods that rely on spreadsheet-based calculations for each network element will not help operators dimension their network accurately and make the right strategic investment decisions.
P.I. Works offers a smarter solution - Smart Network Planning. With the solution, P.I. Works further enhances its network planning capabilities by combining its field experience and technology know-how with advanced AI techniques on an intelligent big data platform. The solution helps operators weigh their choices about when and where to upgrade the capacity of network nodes and by how much with a high level of confidence. The solution also works hand in hand with design and optimization tools, as the recommendations made by P.I. Works Smart Network Planning will impact design and optimization decisions as well.
Smart Network Planning uses predictive AI algorithms and traffic models to create network clusters based on the characteristics of group of cells as well as to forecast network and subscriber metrics.
Machine Learning Based Network Clustering – the First Step for Smart Network Planning
Introduction of new frequency bands, small cells, vendor equipment and technologies coupled with the service level requirements of emerging 5G use cases are driving network complexity. To manage that, operators now examine their networks in a more systematic and organized way. P.I. Works Smart Network Planning looks at the characteristic of groups of cells, in other words ‘cell clusters’, to dramatically improve capacity management across large numbers of small cells in a metro area. This is a far more effective method as compared to individual cell-based dimensioning, as it provides a more holistic view of the network requirements in a coordinated manner across group of cells.
Predicting the Network and Customer Trends – the Second Step for Smart Network Planning
P.I. Works Smart Network Planning processes data related to network and customer metrics collected from various sources. By using the AI powered predictive algorithms, the solution forecasts the network traffic penetration, service specific capacity requirements, customer segment and revenue figures. The solution also identifies anomalies in the data and eliminates them to come up with a more precise trend analysis. Then it correlates the forecast data with the following information:
- Radio network capacity and inventory
- Site deployments and operations cost
- Backhaul capacity availability and proximity to fixed line
This leads to more accurate decisions, lower capacity investment costs, higher quality services and improved competitive advantage.
Automated Recommendations – the Third and Final Step for Smart Network Planning
Based on the findings from step 2 and operator’s network management strategy, the solution recommends the optimum location, timing and investment type for capacity planning actions, such as carrier upgrades, hardware expansions, license upgrades / downgrades and cell additions / removals. Powered by the automated capacity planning actions generated from live-data feed, P.I. Works Smart Network Planning offers the most dynamic and targeted network infrastructure management capabilities on the way 5G. This also makes zero-touch operations possible.
Ron Robinson, Vice President P.I. Works Americas, said “Compared to an individual network element-based reactive network planning approach, P.I. Works’ cluster-based, AI-assisted predictive and centralized planning solution proposes a more holistic planning process for the dimensioning of HetNets. It helps you maximize the customer experience at the lowest cost possible and drives operational efficiency by reducing planning efforts and site visit requirements”.
He also added “You don’t always have to invest in costly capacity expansion projects. P.I. Works solution helps you maximize the utilization of your existing capacity and defers network expansion costs to free up resources for new technology initiatives. P.I. Works will continue to innovate and deliver the most advanced solutions with maximum benefit to operators as well as to their customers”.
Watch the Smart Network Planning video for a walkthrough of the solution capabilities: https://pi.works/SNPv
P.I. Works also plays an important role in the development of key industry standards that define the future of mobile networks. P.I. Works actively contributes to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI), 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) standardization forum, Global TD-LTE initiative (GTI) and open source initiatives.
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