The Evolution of EPC Over Time
The evolution of Evolved Packet Core (EPC) has come a long way since its first inception in 2007 by 3GPP, in Release 8, as a simplified, all-IP, flat architecture based core network for LTE system. In release 14, in June 2017, 3GPP provided architectural enhancements by providing a key core network feature in form of Control and User Plane Separation (CUPS) specification for EPC nodes.As IP traffic increased over time, Packet Switching (PS) was introduced as an enhancement to Circuit Switching (CS) to transport data in packets while retaining transport protocol for voice and SMS over CS. With this, the core network evolved into two domains namely, circuit and packet.
With the introduction of EPC for 4G networks in Release 8 by 3GPP, voice, data and SMS was channeled over IP. The motivation was to move to a flat architecture with few nodes to handle traffic, improve performance, and save costs to telcos. EPC now consists of five essential components namely, Serving Gateway (SGW), Packet Data Network Gateway (PGW), Home Subscriber Server (HSS), Mobility Management Ent…
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