The Good, The Bad And The Ugly Of Convergent Billing

The ‘phone’ in smartphone is growing increasingly superfluous.

It almost goes without saying that smartphones these days perform far more than just transmitting voice and text messages from one place to another. They are television screens and mp3 players. They are internet browsers and maps. They are fitness tools and travel guides. Unlimited data plans therefore are one of the most important services telecoms operators should offer to meet their customers’ demands.

With the emergence of this smartphone age, the honeymoon period between customers and their operators is over. What was once a simple, straight-forward and monogamous relationship where the customer received a single fixed telephone line and one invoice a month has changed. It’s now one where operators must offer a variety of services to survive and the customer can make purchases from third parties such as content providers and resellers.

Consequently, traditional Business Support Systems (BSS) are inadequate for telecoms operators. They are not able to differentiate between the data types or what their customers are engaging in to run a smooth, customer friendly service.

Many businesses offer both prepay and post-pay services but they are complicatedly and expensively rated and charged on entirely different systems. This might cause inconvenience for your clients who would still rather have one single invoice for their services and will almost certainly cause you to dig deeper into your pockets. Continue reading “The Good, The Bad And The Ugly Of Convergent Billing”

Mediation platform in Telecom

In this post we will explain parameters and features of good mediation platform for telecom use.

We will divide those features in two categories: basic and advanced functionalists.

Also we want to note, if  You have accurate mediation system, you will never put garbage in Rating or Billing system, so you will have better performance at least.

So basic mediation system features are:  collection, validation, transformation and distribution in the output format.

Collection means that MS (mediation system) can access to remote switch server and copy binary files on production server for mediation modules. Also it is good to make back up before processing, but in serious telecom operators there are data capacity of 10 MB per minute which require lot of space and hard disks.

Validation is wide term in mediation field, and for example, here are defined different checking like bad time format, time in future and etc.

Transformation is brain of each MS and here are defined all conversions. For examples binary to decade, BCD standard to decade, binary to text, UNIX time stamp to some other time format and etc.

Distribution is possibility for ftp sending this data to another modules. For example to Device Input Handlerin BSCS billing systems. Here are belongs process like  Output normalization and distribution.

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Telecommunication infrastructure

Telecommunication infrastructure usually consist of tree kinds of networks:  

1. Access,

2. Transport  and

3. Core Network.


Fixed access network usually consists of MSAN / DSLAM / IP AN devices, as well as FR and ATM nodes. Mobile GSM network consists of several thousand  base stations of Ericsson, Nokia or Siemens.  Mobile 3G network consists of several hundrids base stations from Ericsson, Nokia and Huawei and etc.

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Rate plan or tariff

Rate plan or tariff  is one of the basic but very important term and entity on telecom field. This is also every day term. You can hear your family, you are speaking a lo toff, what you think, is it not cheap, are you on best rate plan?

So, there are 2 kinds of rate plans, prepaid and postpaid.

Prepaid are usually simplified and postpaid can have very huge structure.

For example, one simple prepaid rate plan,

All days in Week, 1 minute to all national networks is 0.1 Eur, rounding is 15/1.

This mean, that if you make call for 45 seconds to some person in national traffic, no international no roaming, you will need to pay next value:

45= 15 + 30*1

Rating charged price = 0.1/60*15 + 0.1/60*30

If the rounding is 60/1, for 45 seconds you will need to pay 0.1 Eur.

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Telecommunication service

Telecommunication service with simple words is a group of independent functions, which are an integral part of one or more business processes and composition of quantitative and qualitative parameters of technical and information resources, and communications facilities.

Subscriber, user or customer  sees all of these components as a unified unit and used in accordance with their subscription to the expected value. God example of telco services are, voice, sms, msm.  Service provider services to develop sales in the Product Master or Product Catalog. The same service can be turned into different products, packet differently, with different specific rates and charges, and so on.

There are different variants of services, but some of them are divided here:

The service is facing the user (customer-facing service) According to TMF, is one of the services that the consumer (consumer) services (the user (customer) first noticed, as opposed to “service faces to the network” (network-facing service).

It has further significance in relation to the different systems, because operatorovih automate various aspects of operational processes (Operations Processes).

Also very important is compatibility between billing systems, main switch and all network elements. For example it is very hard to start with share tariffs on Single e View or with ADSL on BSCS or with MMS on Sergel billing.

What does a telecommunication job include?

Think of telecommunications as the world’s biggest machine. Strung together by complex networks, telephones, mobile phones and internet-linked PCs, the global system touches nearly all of us. It allows us to speak, share thoughts and do business with nearly anyone, regardless of where in the world they might be. Telecom operating companies operate or provide access to facilities for voice, data, text, sound, and video transmission through wired, wireless, or satellite networks.

Demand is driven by technological innovation and by growth in business activity and consumer spending. The profitability of individual companies depends on efficient operations and good marketing. Large companies enjoy economies of scale in providing a highly automated service to large numbers of customers and in building and maintaining networks. Smaller companies can compete effectively by focusing on underserved markets or by providing specialty services.

With rapid technological changes in telecommunications, those with up-to-date technical skills will have the best job opportunities.

Average earnings in telecommunications greatly exceed average earnings throughout private industry. Continue reading “What does a telecommunication job include?”

Performance aspect on one telecom system

After telecom infrastructure in this lession we will speak about performance aspect on one telecom system. The observed system should be dimensioned to 10 million subscribers. The billing system must start to provide real time processing power for  50 million Call Data Records per day.

For this task from Server performance point of view there must have, at least one of the following operating systems:   Linux (Suse Linux Enterprise Server or Red Hat Enterprise Linux), SUN Solaris Unix or HP-UX.

There must be at least 50 GB of RAM. For some state of art configuration at the moment of the writing this text, some servers has to 100 processors with about 1 TB RAM memory. Some telecom operators in Turkey  are good example for those type of servers.
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Customer management system in TELCO – , CRM System

One of the most popular popular CRM in mobile platform is CX or customer center for BSCS, and CB or convergent billing on Single View platform.

For excellent invoicing you need next parameters for almost every CRM:

It is necessary to describe the every part of the billing system that allows search and access to user information such as name and address of the user to deliver the data for invoices, the address of residence and registration for business users, the data on authorized contact person for business users, birthday, e-mail address, TIN, personal identification number, the number of contracts of sale applications, and data on subscriber numbers,a set of services and service-defined limits, discounts and any other information necessary for the functioning of a process of billing, rating and invoicing-a.

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IPTV standards

One of the very popular new platform in mobile telecommunications is IPTV.

This is totally new product but form perspective of network view this is just a GPRS packets.

Here are some of standards for Open IPTV. IPTV is acronym for Internet Protocol Television with the following features:

  • Choice TV package,
  • Interactive TV guide
  • Automatic program
  • Recording content
  • Parental control program and Video On Demand
So, we are pretty sure, that IPTV is very perspective television!


Software tools for telecom support

If  you are for example telecom rating specialist for Single View or for Geneva or BSCS,  you will need some software tools for easy and flexible acting. Here we will discuss about basic tools.

1. First of all, all process in telecom are usually on UNIX/LINUX, so you will need putty. About usualy UNIX command we will speak letter.

2. Oracle is standard database for telecom field. So, Oracle client installation, TNSNAMES settings, and TOAD will be second tool which you need.

3. For ftp upload you will need Total Commander, File Zilla or WinSPC program.

4. Now, it id time for code  editor. Commercial product is ULTRA edit, and free of charge maybe better editor is  PSPad.  Both are excellent, so depends of your habit. We will like to know, if there are some other similar gadgets, so you can suggest this in field comments.

5.  If you are working remote, than you will need some VPN client like Cisko Cystem.


Configuration rate plans at BSCS

Configuration rate plans and all packages in hierarchy at BSCS billing system will be provided in this lesson,

Firs short schedule, after that we will explain in details.

Creation of zone destinations.
Creation of time packages.
Creation of zone packages.
Configuration of usage packages.
Creation of service packages.
Configuration of rating interval packages.

Creation and configuration of rate plan will all attendant parameters, one time charges, recurring charges, call set up fees, depending fees, free units, cost control free units and lot of more.

It will be described in details.

Price for telecom billing system

The price for one telecom billing system is one of the expert topics, and we will try to give some basic ways and info how to arrange it.

For example, price can be established on the basis building customer without VAT in Euros or Dollars, for a fixed period of implementation of the contract, and of the numbers of accounts which will be calculated according to the official middle currency exchange rate changes EUR / USD published by World Bank of operations.

The offer must be made involving all network and IT levels, which are:

1.Software and all software licenses for every modules of the system
2.Hardware, individually and in total
3.Installation, with average time for standard implementation,
4.Integration and configuration with data in actual information systems,
5.Migration from existing systems to new billing, also monitoring of migration.
6.Training for stuff and in total,
7.Technical support for all software, documentation and quarterly total for the period of 1, 2 or more years
8. Maintenance of hardware modules, and total support for a period of three years.

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Welcome to telecom billing blog!

Welcome to telecom billing blog!

On this place, we will in one tolerant and professional atmosphere discuss about all telecom process:

About configuration, provisioning,  mediation, rating and billing.

Also, here will be some posts about good marketing campaign and post billing process.

So, enjoy staying on our blog!

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