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Emblasoft and Telenor: Testing and validating network slicing in a heterogeneous 5G environment

Emblasoft and Telenor: Testing and validating network slicing in a heterogeneous 5G environment


Emblasoft and Telenor: Testing and validating network slicing in a heterogeneous 5G environment

Network slicing offers MNOs an important and significant new revenue stream from enterprise customers, but continual testing and validation of services is paramount in order to stay ahead of the competition. Find out how Telenor is driving towards commercialising slice-based services – with validation from Emblasoft in our case study.

A recent GSMA Mobile World Live survey of 199 executives from 119 global network operators showed that 70 per cent of respondents ranked ‘network slicing’ as the second most important priority going forward, after creating competitive advantage and opportunities with enterprises. The two are closely linked.

5G enables network slicing, which allows operators and service providers to provide dedicated ‘slices’ of network capacity, each with unique requirements, such as low latency, scalability, security, and high speed , to enterprise customers. Conversely, the requirements of a slice dedicated to a remote IoT device estate, such as a farm of wind turbines, might require a different set of parameters, such as reliability, security, and scalability.

Different slice; different performance parameters

By providing enterprise customers with dedicated connectivity and data processing tailored to their specific requirements, operators see a significant opportunity to build new use cases
and revenue from business customers. Potential customers span the entire ecosystem of vertical industries, such as defence, energy, IoT, automotive, healthcare, manufacturing and many more.

One of the challenges MNOs have, though, is ensuring that they can automatically provision, validate and test the performance and quality of service (QoS) in real time of all network slices throughout the entire lifecycle of the service chain. If operators cannot ensure this, then enterprise customers will look to your competitors to supply and meet their on-going requirements. Bear in mind, the expanded vendor ecosystem that 5G enables also means that test solutions must be compatible with a heterogenous network environment.

Operators need to be able to deliver the promised levels of performance, for each and every application and use case, which requires testing before and after launch, on a proactive basis, to ensure that the service meets the SLAs that each customer demands throughout its lifecycle.

At the same time, MNOs need to innovate and introduce improvements and upgrades to existing services – in terms of improved and new functionality, and to create new use cases and services – on a continual basis, in order to stay ahead of competitors. This requires testing and validating innovative new services on an on-going basis, both pre- and post-launch. It also means that testing and validation processes must integrate with CI / CD / CT – known as DevOps.

Emblasoft and Telenor: Working together to deliver optimal network slicing

Emblasoft Evolver is a complete testing and validation platform that supports continuous deployment pre-launch and on an on-going basis to  confirm that slice performance is maintained after an update, change of SLAs, or after the launch of a new service. By emulating realistic user behaviour – from one user to a million – and generating synthetic traffic, Evolver can test performance from a QoS perspective. 

It's a proven solution. In fact, Evolver was the test solution for a ‘world-first’ project that won a prestigious Global Mobile (GLOMO) Award (“Best Network Software Breakthrough”
in the Mobile Technology category) as it proved the real-world potential of the 5G Service-Based Architecture (SBA) involving multiple vendors and a diverse set of partners.

Since then, we have been building on that breakthrough, working with multiple partners to demonstrate, test, and validate network slicing in a heterogeneous 5G environment for different vertical use cases. And Telenor has continued its R&D activities with the same partner consortium, as you can discover, here.

So, if you’d like to learn how Emblasoft has helped to support these activities, why not read our case study, in which we explore slice validation in action?