Virtual Private Network

One of the key objectives of Virtual
Private Network (VPN), an Intelligent Network (IN) service, for the mobile operator is to
keep a corporate customer’s internal and external communications within the network.
Airtime cost has been generally the major inhibiting factor for full adoption of mobile
communications across the company. VPN service can be the main driver for corporates to
achieve this cost-effectiveness.

A seamless and flexible VPN could be packaged, depending on the
needs of segment/microsegment, consisting of virtual private line, unique number, unique
voicemail, data and fax transmission, and direct link.

VPN Advantages

In order to attract a corporate customer,
besides highlighting saving of investment in private network solutions like EPABX, the
operator has to devise a favourable tariffing policy offering cost savings in
communication expenses. There are a number of other specific advantages.

  • Private numbering plan:
    Numbering is customized and uniform throughout the company

  • Control over user
    routing: Routing is determined for optimization of traffic

  • Network management: The
    VPN configuration is customized to the individual’s needs and managed by the customer
    and/or the operator

  • Extended functionality
    to small remote sites: Such sites are able to use all the features used in the main
    locations

  • Greater flexibility:
    Customers can change the network configuration much more quickly than with private
    networks

  • Centralized billing and
    departmental accounting.

Features Gallore for VPN

Call
logging
provides information on the call
behaviour of individuals or groups of users which can be used to evolve a strategy to
maximize communication efficiency.

fmcell1.gif (10154 bytes)Call screening, of originating and terminating
calls, is performed to limit access to destination ranges (like international or premium
rate numbers) by IN-based on origin/destinations (white and black list), location,
identity (user profile), and time/date. However, a barred call is allowed if the user
pays.

fmcell2.gif (9872 bytes)Virtual private line, separate from professional
one, can be set up based on the time of the day (after 6 p.m. and during weekends),
destination (calls outside VPN), or other parameters can also include pre-paid option for
private use.

 

fmcell3.gif (8487 bytes)Homezone: Operators can create pricing based on
the location of the mobile. As corporates are willing to pay a premium for mobility,
operators can offer pricing differentiation between on-site (called from within the
building) and off-site calls. A special pricing can also be offered within the home,
especially in the evening for private use.

fmcell4.gif (10020 bytes)Unique number (with a unique voicemail) allows each
user a unique (dynamic) profile in the database. During call set-up and service execution,
the call is screened and routed to the destination specified by user in his profile. The
call is also analyzed by the IN to be charged as official or personal. The secrecy of the
mobile number allows the user full control over personal calls, i.e., reachability and
availability.

Packaging VPN: Different Strokes

The introduction of VPN service by mobile
operator leverages considerably on the existing corporate packages. Even though the
operator has to offer better rates, the overall revenue increases due to increase in the
volume of subscriptions as well as the traffic per user due to enhanced features.

Advanced service packages like VPN enable
to tailor services to the needs of different corporate segments—made possible by the
flexibility of IN in terms of:

  • Networks: Seamless service over
    fixed, mobile, and private networks

  • Segments: Tailoring the service
    to specific market segments

  • Users: Service control by
    individual users.

fmcell5.gif (4887 bytes)VPNs can be packaged according to a micro-segment within the
"corporate segment". For instance, for a corporate customer with a mobile
sales-force, a large part of the customer contact is often outside the office. Mobile
communications are therefore of major importance for contact with customers and with the
office. Control of incoming calls is important in order to filter low priority calls.
Keeping the mobile number "secret" avoids low priority calls in high priority
moments. To control costs, private calls can be separated.

Thus, a seamless and flexible VPN could be
packaged, depending on the needs of segment/microsegment, consisting of virtual private
line, unique number, unique voicemail, data and fax transmission, and direct link (with
say fixed lines or EPABX, if regulations allow).

For "personal segment" the
operator can devise "Friend & Family Package" with 10 to 20 users but with
features much more than closed user group.

The introduction of VPN in
mobile networks brings the advantages of IN solution in tailoring services to the needs of
the operators’ key corporate customers—for enhanced loyalty in a competitive
environment.

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