Mobile Data Services change business relations and our everyday life

Mobile Data Services change how business relations and our everyday social lives are conducted. We are now able to access the Internet, corporate networks, e-mails and thousands of smartphone applications while on the move. However, as a Mobile Network Operator, not only is it important to offer quality services at home, but it’s also vital that your subscribers have access to the same services and the same quality when they are roaming abroad.

To ensure the service delivery and quality thereby optimising this roaming potential, a connection for the transmission of data traffic must be established between the visited and the home network. To ensure dedicated and secure connectivity to all of your roaming partners, one link to each of them would be required. Enter the GRX.

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The GSMA GPRS Roaming eXchange (GRX) facilitates the interconnection of all of the data-roaming-enabled Mobile Network Operators. Originally named GPRS, mobile data services these days are also delivered over 3G, HSPA and LTE networks. GRX Carriers provide the necessary services required for Mobile Network Operators to connect to the GRX, which in turn provides complete access to all of the other mobile-data-enabled Mobile Network Operators.

With the increasing volume of mobile data roaming traffic the need for a robust, resilient, reliable, cost-efficient and fully end-to-end managed GRX service is essential. Data roaming traffic volumes are constantly on the rise and are predicted to rise even more as an increasing number of mobile operators launch HSPA+ and LTE enabled mobile networks to support mobile broadband applications, content and internet access.

 

 

Characteristics of a good GRX Network

  • Reach to each and every data roaming enabled GSM (GPRS 2.5G, UMTS 3G, HSPA+ 3.5G and LTE 4G) Mobile Network Operator in the world
  • A robust, resilient and scalable MPLS backbone
  • Flexible access methods
  • Expert VPN/IPSec, MPLS and BGP know-how for the technical network design
  • Competitive prices for last-mile access and global MPLS network transport
  • First class, 24/7 service management and support
  • Presence in all 3 global GRX Peering Points
  • Peering arrangements with all other GRX Providers

We have addressed each one of the above characteristics and can with confidence say that we meet and exceed all of the requirements of each single one.

GRX Setup1

Figure 1: Comfone GRX Overview

Service features

Routing

The Comfone GRX interfaces with other GPRS networks and GRX networks using BGP-4, which allows dynamic routing based on Autonomous System Numbers. The GSM Association allocates AS Numbers to Mobile Network Operators. The Comfone GRX routing interface is fully compliant with GSMA recommendations as defined in the GSMA document IR.34.

Specific customer requirements can be addressed in reference to load sharing, traffic splitting over multiple links and asymmetric routing issues by analysing the requirements and implementing the optimal routing solution with the use of BGP parameters.

Peering and Coverage

Comfone was among the group of pioneer GRX Service Providers back in 2001 and continues to be one of the market leaders in providing GRX Services.

All of the major GRX Service Providers have GRX Network Peering Arrangements with each other. This allows Mobile Network Operators to connect to their GRX Service Provider of choice and at the same time gain access to the entire GSM (GPRS/3G/4G) Data Roaming community. This equates to full data roaming coverage with one connection.

Domain Name Service

The Comfone DNS is set up according to GSMA guidelines and is a mirror of the .gprs Root DNS of the GSMA. Synchronisation at regular intervals guarantees that the DNS database is always up-to-date.

Quality of Service

The Comfone GRX Service is backed by a comprehensive SLA, with commitments and guarantees for the following Key Performance Indicators (KPI):

  • Service Performance and Availability
  • Backbone Network Delay Values
  • Packet Loss Rate
  • Service Implementation
  • Network Changes and Updates
  • Service Support Performance

All KPI values are in full compliance with appropriate GSMA specifications and guidelines set out in the relevant PRDs.

Service Support

Comfone has a 24/7 Global NOC Support Team fluent in multiple languages. An immediate response and swift resolution by the first and second level support teams is assured.

Access and Connectivity

GRX connectivity models consist of any combination of the access methods to create a fully redundant GRX connectivity solution in accordance with a customer’s bandwidth capacity, commercial and quality of service requirements.

Service Monitoring and Reporting with Pulse

The Comfone GRX Pulse Application provides comprehensive reports about the traffic sent and received by customers of the Comfone GRX service.

It is an Online Reporting tool that enables customers to monitor utilisation and performance via secure login internet access. The comprehensive reports support customers in forecasting business trends and making business decisions.

The Comfone IPX Services

The Comfone GRX is part of the Comfone IPX services portfolio along with other Comfone services:

  • SS7/SIGTRAN for the roaming signalling traffic of 2G and 3G mobile networks
  • DIAMETER for the roaming signalling traffic of 4G/LTE mobile networks
  • GRX/GTP for the data roaming payload traffic of 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE mobile networks

The Comfone IPX Services are transported over the Comfone IPX Backbone Network.

The IPX Backbone Network

GRX connectivity models consist of any combination of the access methods to create a fully redundant GRX connectivity solution in accordance with a customer’s bandwidth capacity, commercial and quality of service requirements.

The Comfone IPX Backbone is based on MPLS technology, which natively supports a Quality of Service mechanism using CoS (Class of Service) to differentiate, prioritise, shape and police IP network traffic. Comfone establishes logical and dynamic connections across multiple top-tier provider networks which are all bridged together at all of the 3 Global IPX/GRX Peering Points.

Connectivity and transport to the nearest IPX/GRX Peering Point is provided via a virtual, global MPLS backbone network consisting of multiple leading global and regional MPLS Network Carriers. Thus our reach is ubiquitous.

GRX Setup2

Figure 2: The IPX Backbone Network

 

 

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More information about GRX / IPX


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Contact us

For more information or to request demo access to the GRX / IPX App on Pulse:

pulse@comfone.com

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