The Enea Aptilo SMP Policy Control Engine
We have been working with Wi-Fi policies since our first deployment in 2001. Over the years, the Enea Aptilo SMP Wi-Fi policy control function evolved to work also as a standard policy control function for cellular networks. It is still live in some large-scale 4G deployments. This history has given us the most powerful and advanced Wi-Fi policy control engine in the business, with all the 3GPP diameter interfaces in place. It has also enabled us to create the groundbreaking Enea Aptilo Connectivity Control Service (IoT CCS).
If you are looking for a policy control solution for cellular networks (3GPPP PCRF/PCF), check out the Enea Policy Manager.
Our Wi-Fi policy control engine goes beyond a standard policy solution for Wi-Fi by adding three optional pre-integrated modules:
- A prepaid data balance module
- A policy-based IP assignment module
- A policy-based routing module
This allows us to deliver a complete solution for service definition and delivery, covering all aspects of the service, including:
- Pre-paid data balance
- Policy-based IP routing
- Distributed policy
- Configurable logic
- Interface adapters
- Fair-use policies
- Speed throttling
- Time-based policies
- Bill shock prevention
- Location-based services
Distributed Wi-Fi policy control environment
Policies reside in many different nodes. In reality, operators have a distributed policy model. Insightful policy decisions also depend on real-time data from the production environment.
Thanks to the flexible protocol adapter concept and the Aptilo ServiceGlue™ with intelligent data lookups from external data sources, the Aptilo SMP Wi-Fi policy control engine works well in a distributed policy environment. It can look up policies from the different distributed policy functions. Then make a new policy decision based on these policies, real-time data, and its own comprehensive and dynamic policy definitions.
One example is policies for the Wi-Fi network in a mobile data offloading scenario. Many existing 3GPP PCRFs are designed for mobile networks and thus weak in the Wi-Fi arena. Why not add the Enea Aptilo SMP Wi-Fi policy control engine as an adjunct function for Wi-Fi policies? We can work in concert with your existing policy control solutions and handle the policies for the Wi-Fi service.
Aptilo has deserved our trust after six years of flawless operation of some of our most important Public Wi-Fi Core functions. Merging all Public Wi-Fi Core functions to Aptilo SMP will reduce risk, increase our operational efficiency and save costs. We will also get a more rapid growth in new functionality and innovations as we share the same software with many other leading operators.Nadim Ganam
Product Manager Public WLAN
The ability to offer attractive Wi-Fi services creates new revenue opportunities and expands NTTBP’s service options. We look forward to rolling out advanced, unified, feature-rich Wi-Fi services to our customers with the Aptilo Platform. Aptilo’s proven expertise in enabling carrier Wi-Fi on this large scale made them the right choice.Toshiya Masuzawa
Senior Vice President Marketing Strategy Department
Redefining What Flexibility Really Means
Wi-Fi policy control requirements have only changed over the last few years. From simple policies such as upload limits and parental control, the policies used today are far more complex and need to change more frequently for you to stay competitive. It is no longer sufficient just to have a fixed set of parameters. You cannot remain competitive when you must wait for the next software release or custom development to add a new parameter and business logic.
Enabled by the Aptilo ServiceGlue concept, our Wi-Fi policy control function allows you to add new parameters and advanced business logic in concert with external systems as a system configuration. In addition, we can add new interfaces and protocols to interact with external systems. In the competitive Wi-Fi market, this can mean the difference between taking the first initiative and winning or being stuck with existing business models and losing.
Interface-Agnostic Wi-Fi Policy Control Engine
The application layer in the Aptilo SMP Wi-Fi policy control engine is separate from the interface layer. The most common protocol adapters such as Diameter, RADIUS, REST, XML / SOAP, LDAP, and SNMP are already there. We can add new interfaces, even proprietary ones, through our flexible protocol adapter concept.
Save on Costs by Controlling the End-User Experience
There are several ways that our Wi-Fi policy control engine can help you to control the end-user experience and save on costs. The best part is that our solution’s flexibility will add more ways, implemented with a simple configuration. Gateways from our many ecosystem partners then enforce the policies defined in the Enea Aptilo SMP Wi-Fi control engine.
Our Wi-Fi Policy Control in Practise
The Most Common Policy Rules:
- Fair-use policies
With the ever-increasing launch of new device types and applications with demand for Wi-Fi connectivity, operators need to set policies to get a fair use of network resources. With us, you can take control by defining volume data caps and enabling different service plans for different user segments and device types. Policies can be defined to set usage conditions, such as restricting the usage of specific applications. Bandwidth can also be fairly distributed over all users.
- Service-triggered changes in quality of service(QoS)
Instead of allowing a high bandwidth usage at all times, services such as video-on-demand (VoD) can trigger a higher bandwidth for the movie’s duration.
- Speed throttling in thresholds
Thanks to the tight integration of policy and charging, speeds can throttle down in thresholds with different speeds depending on how much of the monthly allowance has already been consumed.
- Tiered service based on time of day of week
You can set policies to, e.g., prioritize business customers during daytime/weekdays and consumers after hours/weekends and implement differentiated rating at different hours.
- Web self-care triggered service changes
Integration with the operator’s web self-care portal enables automatically triggered policy changes as a result of a subscriber’s online web self-care activities.
- More effective use of available IP addresses and routing
With Aptilo’s policy-based IP assignment and routing control, the operator can assign IP from a shared IP address pool rather than anchoring IP blocks for each gateway. This provides more effective use of available address space. The policy-based IP routing allows the operator to route only parts of the traffic through high-cost nodes such as DPI systems.
- Selling static public IP addresses
With Aptilo’s policy-based IP assignment and routing, operators can easily offer public IP addresses as an additional service.
- Tiered services
With the flexibility in our service profile concept, the operator can define new services, even for shorter periods, allowing them to find additional revenue streams. The services can be based on any combination of data volume, time, bandwidth, applications, or any other parameter that the operator may want to add to the service definition.
- Bill shock prevention
Aptilo SMP Wi-Fi policy control solution enables operators to send automatic notifications to users when they are over a certain threshold in their data usage. Subscribers can also set thresholds with associated warnings through integration with web self-care portals.
- Location-based promotions
Operators can reinforce their brand by executing well-balanced marketing programs through notifications via SMS/email of new services or reminders of services. Offerings can be localized by triggering messages based on location data.
- Loyalty programs
Subscribers can be engaged through notifications and rewarded based on the length of the relationship, spending, and any other parameters the operator wants to define in their loyalty program.
- Parental control
Parents worry about their children’s online behaviors. With Aptilo, the operator can offer policies for parental control integrating with web content filtering and use our time-of-day restrictions and spending limits. With the optional hierarchical account structure, families can share, e.g., the same prepaid quota and distribute it over several family members and device types.
- Are you missing something?
Don’t worry! Our flexible policy engine can create policies on any data we have access to and even make lookups from external sources.