Back in 2020 we took some bright and brilliant people from the Clearing, Operations and Development teams at Comfone, gave them a room and a task: to learn everything that they could about the BCE and come up with Comfone’s response to this new standard.
After many challenges, successes, and a trial with a Tier 1 operator, we launched Phoenix in 2021. Born out of the ashes of TAP, Phoenix complies with all standard requirements and supports even bilaterally agreed scenarios between customers.
What is Phoenix?
Phoenix offers all the required service layers to support the entire BCE process. This includes:
- Initial set-up
- Testing with BCE partners
- Full operation of BCE connections
- Exchange and reconciliation of BCE charging documents
- Real-time access to all BCE data and reports
Phoenix is reliable and scalable. It is specifically designed for Big Data applications to cope with the expected traffic volumes that the IoT world will generate.
Phoenix grants real-time access to data, up to DDRs level. It always provides an up-to-date status of the operational workflow. The BCE process is no longer fixed to rigid timeframes, such as monthly invoice periods. It is much more flexible, and caters for a large variety of charging models, including those which are volume-based.
What makes Phoenix different?
One of our key differentiators is that our service is end-to-end.
We believe this is the best way to support our customers. In comparison, other solutions on the market offer support for parts of the process in a comparable way to what is done in the TAP world today where you have Data and Financial Clearing Agents. Unlike the traditional process using TAP, where there is a clear separation of tasks between the Data and Financial Clearing Agents, the BCE process is the most efficient when one BCE Agent operates it end-to-end.
Comfone does the work
We take care of all the work on behalf of our customers. As a BCE Agent, we produce and send out the charging document containing the BSR and take care of the mandatory reconciliation process based on BSR/ Invoice.
Only the party that has carried out the aggregation and generated the BSR can investigate disputes related to traffic volumes, and as the BCE Agent we take care of that for our customers. Having two parties involved would be inefficient, as one would be producing reports and another one issuing invoices but receiving a dispute.
The Phoenix team supports you throughout the entire process, working with customised solutions and providing you with the flexibility that you require. We help to make the transition to BCE as seamless as possible.
This frees up your time to focus on other important business matters!
I’m waiting for 5G SA so I’m not ready to launch BCE yet
We hear this answer a lot from our customers, and we want to make the argument that now is the right time to implement BCE.
Why not start with BCE and check your IoT traffic? This is barely visible on TAP which only supports transaction-based charging but from a commercial point of view you can improve the charging for this type of traffic on your network by using BCE.
With this approach, you are not only opening up an additional revenue stream, but also getting familiar with BCE! This means you will be ready once 5G SA comes into play.
Phoenix: helping to monetise new technologies
5G, IoT and M2M require sophisticated charging models for roaming, which cannot be supported by TAP. These innovative roaming scenarios, fully supported by BCE standards and by Comfone’s Phoenix service, represent the future of your roaming business and are an opportunity to generate additional revenue streams.
Phoenix also helps you to improve your cash flow. The wholesale charging models already exist today but can only be implemented with a discount agreement and a very long and time- consuming reconciliation after a year has passed.
With BCE you don’t need to wait for the end of the discount period to have the commercial model you wanted applied. Instead of issuing a correction credit note after a year, you are able to implement the right charging model directly in BCE and have the correct amounts invoiced with the frequency you want, whether that is monthly, quarterly, or something different.
I’m ready for BCE, but my partner isn’t. What can I do?
To launch BCE, both you and your partner would need to agree and be BCE compliant.
We understand that it can take time and it might be tricky to convince your partner to be BCE-compliant, but we do have an answer! If you are willing to implement wholesale charging models without waiting for BCE, and you are on the Comfone Key2roam Hub then our solution can work for you.
Phoenix Key2roam provides you with the opportunity to implement BCE like wholesale charging models without your partners being BCE ready! Check out Pedro’s latest videos to find out more.