LTE network traffic continues to explode with subscriber numbers, smartphone usage, and media-rich applications all on the rise. Mobile operators can maximize revenue potential by fast-tracking new, differentiated services such as VoLTE based on guaranteed quality – if they can scale reliably.
- To meet the high expectations of today’s mobile users, LTE network operators and equipment manufacturers must overcome formidable new challenges:
- Network infrastructures feature diverse equipment, systems, and applications from a multitude of vendors
- Spikes in already-hard-to-predict signaling traffic (smartphones generate up to 20x the signaling traffic of traditional phones) can overwhelm infrastructures and lead to outages
- Maintaining performance across the network using both GTP, SIP and Diameter-based signaling
- Scaling policy management, mobility, monetization, and Quality of Service (QoS)
Operators must qualify the functionality, resiliency, and performance of new services before they deploy and as the network evolves, or risk serious damage to their brand reputation and bottom line.
Ixia’s EPC and Diameter Test Solutions
Since failures typically occur at high scale or under extreme conditions, new degrees of realism are needed to stress and assess LTE network cores and charging systems. The Ixia evolved packet core (EPC) test solution delivers actionable insight and visibility into device performance, network behavior, and scalability under realistic conditions.
From QoS to policies to monetization, IxLoad lets operators customize test scenarios to measure critical elements of performance and profitability. The Ixia solution equips service providers and equipment manufacturers to isolate and emulate key components of the LTE core and charging systems delivering:
Diameter testingassessing and emulating policy servers (PCRF), subscriber servers (HSS), charging servers (OCS, OFCS), and Diameter Routing Agent (DRA) at scale to validate true capacity and performance as well as end-to-end billing and charging.
- Mobile Management Entity (MME) isolation to validate access control, security issues, LTE mobility, and scalability.
- S/PGW gateway isolation to assess the scalability of both the signaling and the data planes and validate QoS at scale
- End-to-end testing by emulating thousands of eNodeBs and millions of UEs connected to them performing a wide variety of wireless signaling and traffic (including VoLTE) in order to assess the correct functionality and performance of the entire EPC, with or without a real IMS.
- IMS testing to ensure interoperability and scalability in multivendor environments. Includes generating VoLTE audio and video calls to isolate and stress the IMS infrastructure, emulating SIP signaling storms, and simulating RTP media negotiations at high scale.
- Wi-Fi offload testing emulating wireless LAN (WLAN) access networks to assess the scalability of Wi-Fi offload gateways (WAGs) and controllers while measuring QoE for differentiated services provided through the EPC
IxLoad EPC test solutions mitigate risk in the lab and prevent costly outages in the field so operators can deploy and upgrade networks without negatively impacting existing services.
Only Ixia EPC Test Solution
IxLoad LTE test solutions deliver repeatable, large-scale testing virtually impossible to create by any other means. Advantages include:
- Comprehensive LTE core testing: Isolated component and system-level assessments generating both network and signaling traffic. Combines pure IMS testing and Diameter server emulation to validate performance for a wide mix of mobile applications.
- Industry-leading VoLTE/ VoIP test solution providing an extremely customizable and high-performance answer to ensuring the EPC is capable of delivering on the promise of high-definition (HD) voice and video.
- Convergence: IxLoad can also be used to assess LTE radios used for access in the same test.
- Realism: Advanced subscriber modeling to emulate real-world traffic (voice, video, Web transactions) for true performance validation amidst live network conditions.
- Unrivaled scalability and performance: Millions of subscriber sessions generated to simulate conditions where failures occur. Ultra-high scalability on the user and control plane for true validation of devices and charging systems.
- Flexible, comprehensive Diameter test solution leveraging Developing Solutions'dsTest® to measure packet routing performance, load balancing, failover performance, network congestion control, and proxy/relay services used in peering/roaming agreements for all Diameter-based interfaces.