Vast Networks, Africa’s first open access network provider, has selected Benu Networks’ Virtual Service Edge (VSE) platform to deploy the only carrier-grade mobile offload network on the African continent.
The network will deliver affordable connectivity, save on costly spectrum, and improve the customer experience. Vast Networks offers a network of hotspots across Africa that mobile subscribers can access seamlessly, moving mobile traffic off the cellular network and onto Vast’s Wi-Fi network to fee up spectrum for mobile operators.
The mobile operator maintains complete control of the subscribers and services when offloaded to the Wi-Fi network. Subscribers can access all of their cellular services on the Wi-Fi network, and benefit from a faster improved service when connected via Wi-Fi. Vast Networks can host multiple service providers on the same network, and provide an easy and secure authentication method via subscribers’ SIM cards.
Benu Networks’ Virtual Service Edge (VSE) platform delivers an enhanced Wi-Fi experience when enabling mobile data offload and Wi-Fi roaming services. The VSE platform enables Vast to offer seamless Wi-Fi offload, and roaming to its partners on a single SSID footprint, thereby optimising spectrum efficiency and operational costs. In addition, Benu Networks’ VSE incorporates vBNG and vG functions as defined in the Broadband Forum standards, and supports a wide variety of tunnelling and encapsulation mechanisms required to connect to mobile operator packet core networks.
“The main business value proposition of Benu is to help network providers become more agile by virtualising many of the functions traditionally performed by the physical box in the network, thus enabling a lower cost and more rapid introduction of new functions and use cases such as Wi-Fi offloading and network slicing,” said Adlane Fellah, CEO of analyst firm Maravedis.
Khetan Gajjar, Chief Technology Officer, Vast Networks, said: “Benu’s Virtual Service Edge architecture continues to outperform competitive alternatives with its ability to easily address complex challenges while providing unrivalled scalability, seamless integration, impressive cost advantages, and an optimal user experience.”
Mads Lillelund, CEO, Benu Networks, said: “Our Virtual Service Edge platform enables the launch of next generation services that provide the highest level of QoS and revenue generation to achieve the most optimal, cost-efficient network.”