Control Plane Signaling, Scalability, and Diameter Challenges

Modern telecommunication systems are exceedingly complex, and high profile crashes have hit 4G cellular networks. These crashes have been attributed to a “signaling storm” that gets out of control and causes a network crash. The 4G LTE separates the control plan from the user data plane, and the Diameter signaling protocols for the control plane have been suggested as a cause of these catastrophic network crashes. 

The use cases and drivers for Diameter traffic signaling are analyzed within the context of monetizing the 4G network and other factors that drive the signaling traffic. While the existing crash scenarios appear to be one-off events attributed to technology immaturity, the expected rapid growth in signaling suggests tomorrow will be like yesterday, only more so.

Included are an outlook for this nascent market, survey of existing and new entrants, and guidance for both operators and vendors. Companies surveyed are Acme Packet, Alcatel-Lucent, Amdocs, Diametriq, Ericsson, F5 Traffix, Tekelec, and Ulticom. 

  • 1. INDUSTRY ANGST ABOUT DIAMETER SIGNALING
  • 2. DIAMETER: THAT WAS THEN, THIS IS NOW
  • 3. FACTORS AFFECTING GROWTH OF DIAMETER
    • 3.1. 4G Subscribers
    • 3.2. IMS / VoLTE
    • 3.3. 3G Migration
    • 3.4. M2M Traffic
    • 3.5. Service and Charging Plans
    • 3.6. Online and Offline Charging Functions
  • 4. WHY DO WE NEED DIAMETER ROUTING?
    • 4.1. Scaling Challenges and Centralized Diameter
    • 4.2. Congestion and Flow Control
    • 4.3. Network Monitoring and Management
    • 4.4. Roaming and Network Interconnect
    • 4.5. Load Balancing
  • 5. MARKET SIZING
    • 5.1. Methodology and Assumptions
    • 5.2. Case 1: High Market Demand
    • 5.3. Case 2: Low Demand
    • 5.4. Case 3: More Likely High Scenario
  • 6. DIAMETER ROUTING DIFFERENTIATION
    • 6.1. Full Service EPC / RAN / Core Network Vendor
    • 6.2. Diameter Technology Supplier
    • 6.3. Core Network Node Supplier
    • 6.4. Stand-alone Diameter Routing Vendors
    • 6.5. Diameter Hosting Solutions
  • 7. VENDORS OFFERING DIAMETER ROUTING SOLUTIONS
    • 7.1. Acme Packet
    • 7.2. Alcatel-Lucent
      • 7.2.1. Diameter Control Point
      • 7.2.2. DSC 5780 DSC / Diameter Control Point as DRA and DEA
    • 7.3. Amdocs
    • 7.4. Diametriq
    • 7.5. Ericsson
    • 7.6. F5 Traffix
    • 7.7. Tekelec
    • 7.8. Ulticom
  • 8. SUMMARY AND STRATEGIC RECOMMENDATIONS
    • 8.1. Operator Recommendations
    • 8.2. Vendor Recommendations
      • 8.2.1. Full Service EPC / RAN / Core Network Vendor
      • 8.2.2. Diameter Technology and Routing Vendors

Tables

  1. Diameter Sanity Check, 3Q 2012
  2. Diameter Market - Optimistic, 2016
  3. Diameter Market - Conservative, 2016
  4. Diameter Market - Optimistic, 2016
  5. Net-Net Diameter Director DSC, Characteristics
  6. DSC 5780 Diameter Control Point, Characteristics
  7. Intelligent Routing Controller, Characteristics
  8. Diametric Routing Eng, Characteristics
  9. Diameter Signaling Controller, Characteristics
  10. Signaling Delivery Controller , Characteristics
  11. Diameter Signaling Router, Characteristics

Charts

  1. Worldwide 3G and 4G Subscrib, Example of 3G Migration to Diameter
  2. LTE Subscribers, Markets, and Outages, Operator Growing Pains
  3. Diameter Routing Market, World Market, Forecast: 2013 to 2016

Figures

  1. Small Network Configurat, Point-to-point Routing
  2. Moderate Network Growth , Point-to-point Routing
  3. Large Network with Scalable Growth, Centralized Routing
  4. Net-Net Diameter Director DSC, Centralized Network with Roaming
  5. DSC 5780 DSC / Diameter Control Point, Centralized Routing and Roaming Instances
  6. Intelligent Routing Controller
  7. Diameter Signaling Router, Centralized Routing
  8. Diameter Signalware, Centralized DSC Architecture
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Research Information

Price
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Publish Date
4Q 2012
Code
AN-1279
Research Type
Technology Analysis Report
Pages
26