By Claus Hetting, Wi-Fi NOW CEO & Chairman
Long-time Wi-Fi service management market leader Aptilo – today part of Enea – last week launched their first complete SaaS Wi-Fi service management solution for communication service providers (CSPs). The Cloud-based service includes everything you need to launch and monetise carrier-grade Wi-Fi services if you’re a service provider, Enea says. More than 100 service providers have thus far deployed an Enea Aptilo SMP (Service Management Platform).
If you’re a mobile operator, telco, or cableco – or even a managed service provider – typical enterprise-grade Wi-Fi service management platforms will fall well short of what you need to deploy and manage your carrier Wi-Fi services at scale. Aptilo Networks – today part of Enea – has been delivering their SMP (service management platform) to carriers all over the world for more than a decade and has racked up more than 100 service provider clients. As of this week the Aptilo SMP is now available as a SaaS, fully virtualised and in the Cloud, of course.
SaaS in this case means that each telco client will get their own individual platform hosted on Amazon Web Services (AWS). It also introduces a great deal of cost flexibility for carriers in that it allows a pay-as-you-grow model as well as gradual expansion of features and functionality. “As the network grows, CSPs can pick and choose functions that complement their existing solution so that they do not need to perform a costly replacement of their entire system. CSPs can now add new enhanced Wi-Fi service management functions over legacy services from the Cloud for the first time,” Enea says.
With the new SaaS – dubbed SMP-S – carriers can operate secure and monetizable Wi-Fi services including seamless SIM-based authentication for mobile offload, a selection of other login methods, and B2B multi-tenancy support allowing service providers to sell managed Wi-Fi to a variety of venues, including hospitality, transport hubs, stadiums, and even enterprises.
The SMP-S can also be used to enhance legacy systems and a wide range of integration options are available, Enea says (see graphic below).
Enea believes the new SaaS platform will be particularly attractive to operators who thus far have chosen to develop their own service management platforms. “So many operators with in-house developed systems are struggling to keep up with the rate of service evolution in the Wi-Fi industry. We’re providing them with a cost-effective and full-featured alternative to doing it themselves, which is an resource intensive and costly task,” says Johan Terve, Senior Director of Marketing, Enea.
Another option is for operators to adopt the SaaS for particular services and then perhaps migrate the full suite of management tasks to the SaaS over time. “There are multiple reason to adopt the SaaS and you don’t need choose a forklift replacement strategy – gradual also works. At the same time we do have clients who have migrated their full system to our SaaS for scalability and operational reasons,” Johan Terve says.