Value Added Services: A Double-Edged Sword

30 - June 2019
By Ohad Kamer

VAS used to be a growth engine providing valuable services and revenue streams, but technology evolved, and today operators are “stuck” with it due to regulations. But VAS is here to stay. Why?

Networks are transitioning to virtualization and 5G using old legacy VAS that becomes a bottleneck in this process. VAS is based on legacy, old technology and therefore it becomes an obstacle when organizations try to make the transition smooth and efficient.

Moreover, Value Added Services such as MMS and SMS might include personal data attributes or use-case specific communication services.  In both instances, the service provider is no longer just delivering a confidential message from their customer, but is transitioning to cloud services, potentially increasing service provider exposure should a GDPR breach be identified. The regulatory need is to change the VAS platform to a GDPR-authorized platform.

Adding to the 3 challenges mentioned above is the fact that vendors who developed this technology and who have provided maintenance to VAS shrink their VAS service operations as this is no longer a strategic line of business. Therefore, service today has become expensive and quality of service does not meet market standards. This impacts competency and tolerance to make changes and migrate the systems to next generation.

So what should companies do in this complex situation?

First and foremost, a cost-effective solution is required. We already highlighted that VAS is not a revenue stream anymore, but rather a burden. It is important to look for ways to ease integration of new services, and at the same time lower the costs associated with the service platforms. Lean operating models are an essential part of this, as they can reduce lifecycle management costs and launch new services more quickly.

Secondly, an elastic solution that can be added to the NFV environment with minimal disruption to your current network infrastructure is necessary. Ideal is a VAS solution that can be easily integrated into one’s networks, providing standard communication interfaces with other applications in the network.

Thirdly, it is important that there be no vendor lock-in on hardware (physical server installation), that particular hardware not be linked to any specific server vendor or model, and that there be complete  freedom of choice when it comes to vendors and model preference.

Lastly, companies must have Open Virtualization Format (OVF) to allow the usage of any virtualization vendor and the ability to install the VAS application on any CSP VMware Data Center.

  • Atrinet has been tested on Google and Amazon Cloud, and enables a much quicker VAS application deployment for more rapid iteration, adaption, and extention over time. It is a
  • PaaS (Platform as a Service) that allows CSPs to focus on business development and spending less on unnecessary platform support.

Atrinet has developed VAS platforms to meet virtualization needs and to enable a smooth transition to the cloud while reducing operational costs. Our team includes R&D experts providing services to over 150 CSPs with operational install base of Nokia and Comverse/Mavenir.  Atrinet is their trusted partner for support of ongoing challenges and transition needs. Our team of experts provides integration and support and 24×7 care and maintenance to the VAS infrastructure.

VAS technologies, which were once the name of the game, are suffocating organizations today who long to modernize and leave legacy behind, but can’t. This double edged sword keeps organizations feeling stuck, trying to maneuver between old and new, but getting no where.

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