Exfo uses AI to reassure 5G operators

Testing and service assurance vendor Exfo has launched some new cleverness designed to take the stress out of managing a 5G network.

In case nobody told you, 5G is a lot more complicated than any of the previous Gs, so much so that it’s just too much for mere people to get their heads around. That’s where artificial intelligence comes to the rescue, with its omniscience and ability to learn on the job. Exfo reckoned it was about time its service assurance platform made the most of AI so it has launched Nova Adaptive Service Assurance.

The cleverest bit of it seems to be Nova SensAI (possibly a play on the word ‘Sensei’), which Exfo describes as its central nervous system. As you may have guessed, it’s all about using AI and machine learning to analyse the many layers of the network and offer a good view of them. Exfo claims it will uncover network issues no other equivalent platform can, possibly even before they’ve happened.

“The combination of more users, more connections, more apps and more convoluted networks has created a perfect storm of complexity for operators,” said Philippe Morin, EXFO CEO. “By delivering only the right data at the right time, Nova A|SA is a unique intelligent automation platform to provide operators with 100% visibility into user experience and network performance. We’re talking about operations teams being able to resolve issues in minutes rather than days—or preventing them entirely.”

We’d be lying if we said we had any way of verifying those claims, but as the nature of the launch implies, this is all very complicated stuff. We do know that Exfo is up against some pretty stiff competition in the 5G service assurance space, with all its competitors also claiming to take the stress out of 5G for operators. Telecoms CTOs would seem to have their work cut out picking the best one.

Telecoms.com Annual Industry Survey 2019

As we move towards the end of another eventful year, Telecoms.com has once again conducted its Annual Industry Survey, inviting fellow telecoms professionals to look back on 2019, and look ahead towards 2020 and beyond. In this report, we share with you the key findings of the survey as well as our analysis of them, with topics including: industry update, 5G, digital transformation, IoT, and OSS/BSS.

Here are a few highlights from the findings:
• Over half of the respondents think 2019 has been good, and three quarters believe 2020 will be better
• 5G, IoT, Cloud are among the priority investment areas
• Although 5G will keep rolling out aggressively in different parts of the world, 88% of respondents believe the industry should continue investing in 4G
• Budget alone will not guarantee digital transformation success, but the lack of it can be a deal breaker
• 81% of respondents see smart cities as the biggest IoT opportunity outside of home
• 70% of respondents believe BSS should undergo major changes in order to enable custom network services

We hope you enjoy the read.

 

Telecoms.com Annual Industry Survey 2018

Welcome to the 2018 edition of the Telecoms.com Intelligence Annual Industry Survey report. The findings from our signature survey continue to provide insights and foresight into the dynamic telecoms industry.

Once again well over 1,000 industry professionals from a broad array of backgrounds responded to the survey with their first-hand experience as well as their perspective views on the current status and future trends of the industry. As our customary practice, the report started with an overall industry landscape before we delved into six key areas pertinent to today’s telecoms industry: NFV, 5G, IoT, Digital Transformation, Security, and Test & Monitoring.

A few key findings from the survey:

  • 75% felt positive about the telecoms industry’s business outlook for 2019
  • 79% believed NFV is critical to their companies overall strategy
  • 61% believed emerging technologies and services are critical to telecom’s long-term success
  • 75% saw digital transformation as very important

Fill in the short form below to download your free copy now.

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Exfo set to snap up Astellia

Test and measurement specialist Exfo has announced it will acquire a 33% stake in Astellia, and will soon be launching a voluntary takeover bid of the company.

The purchase of Astellia will eventually take Exfo into new waters, as the organization is primarily focused on testing new solutions prior to commercial launches. With Astellia in its armoury there is potential for the team to move into the on-going network management space as Astellia focuses on performance analysis of mobile networks and subscriber experience.

Astellia describes itself as a provider of network and subscriber intelligence enabling mobile operators to improve service quality, maximize operational efficiency, reduce churn and develop revenues. The main focus of the business in recent months has been automated optimization, actionable geolocated insights and big-data analytics for operations, customer service and marketing functions of the business. In other words, it claims to give tips to operators on how to do things better. One of those ones.

“This investment in Astellia is in line with our strategy to increase our critical mass and our client base, and to expand our addressable market in the global analytics and service assurance industry,” said Germain Lamonde, Executive Chairman of Exfo’s Board of Directors.

“If our public tender offer is successful, we’ll be able to combine Astellia’s solutions and services with those of Exfo and become a world leader in the network monitoring and analytics sector and target growth opportunities such as network virtualization, 5G and the Internet of things.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Exfo will purchase the company from the three Astellia founders, as well as Isatis Capital. The deal itself is yet to clear the approval of French foreign investment authorities and the supervision of Autorité des marchés financiers. That said, Astellia’s Board of Directors has already given the thumbs up to the deal, which will total roughly €25.9 million. The deal is expected to close during the latter stages of 2017.