EPC Huawei

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  • MBB enabling services and improving user experience

    Advanced EPC

  • Advanced EPCMBB enabling services and improving user experience

    1 Introduction ........................................................................................................................1

    2 EPC standards timeline ........................................................................................................2

    3 Challenges and opportunities for the Advanced EPC ............................................................3

    4 Advanced EPC Key Features ................................................................................................4

    4.1 Signaling congestion control ............................................................................................4

    4.2 User plane congestion control ..........................................................................................4

    4.3 Carried grade WiFi integration .........................................................................................5

    4.4 Voice service for LTE users ...............................................................................................6

    4.5 Video enhancement .........................................................................................................7

    4.6 Proximity based services ..................................................................................................8

    4.7 Group communication system enabler .............................................................................9

    4.8 Machine type communications ........................................................................................9

    4.9 Architecture enhancement for application interworking ................................................11

    4.10 XML based access to PCRF .............................................................................................12

    4.11 SGi traffic steering .........................................................................................................12

    5 Conclusions .......................................................................................................................14

    6 Annex: Abbreviation ..........................................................................................................15

  • 3GPP s 4G mobile system LTE/EPC has been developed by the mobile

    industry in the last few years during 3GPP releases 8 and release 9 to meet

    the continuously growing service requirements of MBB. The overall system

    consists of the radio system LTE and the Evolved Packet Core (EPC). A

    further evolution of the LTE radio system has been done in the time frame of

    3GPP release 10 and is called LTE-Advanced. The corresponding overall

    system has been selected as an ITU 4G technology option. It should be

    noted that LTE denotes the radio system, but is also the official terminology

    for marketing the overall mobile system of LTE and EPC.

    During the following 3GPP releases on the network side the further evolution

    of the EPC is targeting at enabling of more profitable services and improving

    user experience, both bringing added value for the whole mobile market.

    Service enabling has thus become an important topic after basic EPC

    features have been specified during initial 3GPP releases. In this whitepaper

    it focuses on the current phase of EPC, which is denoted as Advanced EPC.

    It takes advantage of the excellent radio capability of LTE and LTE-

    Advanced.

    The current phase of the Advanced EPC is facing the following challenges:

    High penetration of smart phones with a variety of applications causing

    traffic of virtually any pattern and volume.

    Fast traffic growth with growth of revenues not keeping pace.

    Increasing diversity of service types and their related Quality of Experi-

    ence.

    To address those challenges, the following areas of improvement have been

    identified:

    Enhancements that mitigate or prevent system overload.

    Capacity boosting by WiFi integration and offloading.

    Enhancements for enabling key services and other new business opportu-

    nities.

    Introduction of new service enablers.

    In this whitepaper it provides an overview on how the EPC timeline devel-

    oped, considers the specific challenges and opportunities for the Advanced

    EPC and describes the different key features of the Advanced EPC that are

    intended to address the challenges and opportunities.

    1 Introduction

    1

  • The initial activities on the LTE/EPC system started already in 2004. The

    radio access system and the related core network have been designed to

    provide a new mobile system targeting at higher spectral efficiency, higher

    peak data rates, shorter round trip times and frequency flexibility. This radio

    access system is called Evolved UTRAN (E-UTRAN), and the core network

    is the Evolved Packet Core (EPC). Both together form the Evolved Packet

    System (EPS).

    EPC is designed by 3GPP not only as the core network for the LTE/E-

    UTRAN radio access system but as well for its predecessors GERAN and

    UTRAN. The EPC is thus an evolution of the packet core that was designed

    for GERAN/UTRAN. Main differences to the earlier packet core are the new

    access interface adjusting for the specifics of the E-UTRAN/LTE radio

    access, a simplified bearer management scheme solely relying on network

    controlled bearer services and a split into control and user plane network

    entities. EPC also contains capabilities for using Non-3GPP access tech-

    nologies (e.g. WiFi) as access systems.

    EPS is a pure packet system and, besides SMS, it does not provide any

    telecom services for end users like circuit switched telephony. A separate IP

    Multimedia Subsystem using the bearer services of the EPS provides

    multimedia telephony for the end user. To enable initial EPS deployments

    without an IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS), 3GPP defined the Circuit

    Switched Fallback feature (CSFB), which transfers the device from LTE to

    GERAN or UTRAN for performing circuit switched calls, but enjoying for IP

    based services the high bandwidth and low latency of E-UTRAN/LTE. For

    deployments with EPS and IP Multimedia Subsystem 3GPP defined the

    Single Radio Voice Call Continuity features (SRVCC) to enable a step-

    wise rollout of E-UTRAN/LTE coverage by continuing IP Multimedia Subsys-

    tem provided services as Circuit Switched services via GERAN/UTRAN

    when a user leaves E-UTRAN/LTE coverage.

    2 EPC standards timeline

    2

    Figure 2a. EPC standards timeline

    2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017

    Release 8 Release 9 Release 10 Release 11 Release 12 Release 13 and later on

    LTE LTE-Advanced Further LTE evolution on LTE-B/C

    EPC: basic Advanced EPC: Service Enabling for MBB Further EPC evolution

  • In the last few years the Telco industry experienced significant changes.

    One significant trend is the move of Internet services from personal comput-

    ers to mobile devices. This trend got accelerated especially with the explo-

    sive penetration of smart phone.

    Another trend is that in many developed markets the penetration rate of

    mobile subscribers is reaching some saturation. This increases the interest

    of looking for new revenue opportunities and extending mobile services to

    other potential markets (Enterprise, government, machine communications,

    etc).

    The whole mobile industry eco-system started to change when smart phone

    begun to dominate the terminal market. One significant change is that

    traditional telecom services like voice and message get more and more

    challenged by the so-called Over-The-Top (OTT) applications using the

    mobile system as a transparent bit-pipe. However, there is more and more

    interest in offering better services to the users by making the mobile system

    application-aware and providing added value, like QoS, for OTT applica-

    tions.

    The following activities have been identified for Advanced EPC to proactively

    cope with the above trends and challenges:

    Make the mobile system more robust and efficient, in order to manage the

    increasing amount of connected devices, but also the increasing variance

    of connection types, e.g. from M2M, and save OPEX and CAPEX.

    Enlarging the system capacity, in order to meet the requirements from

    huge traffic volume, which is still in a process of growing fast.

    Support new services and further improve the Quality of Experience for

    key services like voice and video.

    Offer network capabilities to applications for better supporting the diversity

    of Internet services and facilitating an expansion of the mobile ecosystem

    towards including applications.

    After the basic EPC features, i.e. providing high performance IP bearer

    services for MBB, had been completed within 3GPP release 8 and release 9,

    work started on enabling voice, multimedia and machine type communica-

    tions services, like emergency call, CSFB/SRVCC enhancements, M2M

    related features. The currently ongoing phase of advancing the EPC targets

    at improving or creating business opportunities for operators by enhancing

    existing or developing new EPC services and features. The timeline of the

    Advanced EPC is shown in the figure 2a.

    3 Challenges and opportunities for the Advanced EPC

    3