The Future of Digital Landscape: Harnessing Networking-as-a-Service (NaaS) for Enhanced Revenue and Superior User Experience

The introduction of 5G technology has become a key driver for CSPs to enable new revenue-generating services that can enhance the user experience. However, achieving monetization and optimized user experience has been a challenge due to a lack of full visibility into the entire network infrastructure. As CSPs are on a journey to build a uniquely capable standalone network, delivering network assurance and application assurance components in near-real-time through artificial intelligence/machine learning (AI/ML)-driven automation has become essential.

Building a standalone network for 5G

To enable 5G, CSPs are building a standalone network that can offer an enhanced user experience and enable new revenue-generating services with reduced risk. The new network will have to support a range of applications that will require differentiated Quality of Service (QoS), such as gaming, virtual reality, and self-driving cars. The network architecture includes a distributed cloud system and edge computing, providing low latency and fast processing.

Managing the Quality of Service for New Revenue-Generating Services

Managing Quality of Service (QoS) to provide a positive user experience will be crucial if CSPs trial new revenue-generating services. A CSP can lose millions of dollars in revenue if a service is not well-managed, causing user churn. Therefore, CSPs will need to ensure that they have a comprehensive understanding of user behavior and consumption patterns. CSPs must consider how they will manage data traffic, provide data insights, and ensure that the network capacity aligns with customer usage.

Lack of full visibility is a hindrance to monetization

The major hindrance to achieving monetization and an optimized user experience has always been a lack of full visibility into the entire network. With the complexity of the 5G standalone network architecture, it is even more critical that CSPs have full-stack visibility from the access layer through to the application layer. By delivering full visibility, CSPs can gain a comprehensive understanding of the network and recommend how to allocate network resources for optimal functionality.

Importance of Network Assurance for Infrastructure Programming

If the goal is eventually to allow access to program the infrastructure, then CSPs need the ability to deliver assurance to support that infrastructure. To achieve this, they need a robust infrastructure that delivers network assurance and application assurance components in near-real time through AI/ML-driven automation. Network assurance ensures end-to-end monitoring, detection, and isolation of network anomalies, while application assurance provides application-level monitoring, detection, and isolation of application-level anomalies.

Reconsidering Disaggregated Visibility for a Holistic View

CSPs are now recognizing that it’s time to reconsider the disaggregated visibility method in favor of a holistic view with automated control across the entire network and infrastructure – Network as a Service (NaaS). NaaS is a service model where the network infrastructure is outsourced to a third-party provider who delivers network services to customers. NaaS provides a more holistic view of CIM (Configuration and Inventory Management) to address challenges such as reducing time to market and scaling network resources on demand.

Network management and service monitoring for full-stack visibility

To achieve full-stack visibility that is integrated and automated, CSPs need a network management and service monitoring solution that offers features and capabilities such as managing KPIs (Key Performance Indicators), managing network inventory, managing changes related to the network, and managing network alarms. The solution should make use of an advanced multi-dimensional, deterministically model-based engine instead of a rules-based engine that needs to be updated constantly.

A Deterministic Model-Based Engine for Advanced Automation

A deterministic model-based engine is essential for full-stack visibility and advanced automation. Unlike a rules-based engine, a model-based engine has built-in intelligence that allows for changes in different network scenarios. A deterministic model-based engine will enable CSPs to focus on optimizing the network rather than constantly updating and maintaining complex rule sets.

Enabling visibility for developers to work on the network

A more holistic view of what’s happening in the network will allow CSPs to deliver visibility that lets developers develop on their network. By exposing their network services, CSPs can attract new developers who can innovate on top of the network. This approach will enable CSPs to bring even more applications and services to market, further driving revenue growth.

Enabling a Programmable Network with the NaaS Model

Eventually, delivering a NaaS model could enable service providers to build a programmable network that can be “sliced” into different configurations for a wide variety of customers, including MVNOs, large enterprises, utilities, and others. Through NaaS, CSPs can simplify the network management, offer flexible pricing plans, and scale their services quickly.

With the introduction of 5G, CSPs have an opportunity to enhance user experience and create new revenue-generating services. However, delivering full-stack visibility for the network infrastructure is essential to ensure success. CSPs need to adopt a holistic approach to network management and service monitoring, delivering automation through a multi-dimensional, deterministically model-based engine. Eventually, CSPs can deliver a NaaS model to enable a programmable network that will take innovation to the next level.

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