MVNOs and MVNEs as well as network operators themselves take advantage of LTS as a monitoring tool for the live network that detects and alarms about any performance degradations or outages. The LTS Mobile Network Monitor reports any inconsistencies immediately in form of an e-mail alarm or via SNMP traps. KPIs obtained by the system can also be queried at any time via SNMP, so that testers are permanently aware of the availability, reliability, quality, and integrity of the mobile network services from the subscribers’ point of view.
For live network monitoring, a central LTS server controls a network of probes distributed over a whole country or even multiple countries around the world. Our off-the-shelf probes are based on an industrial PC board controlling up to 8 mobile devices each, all enclosed in a 19”-rack-mountable housing. On request, we provide custom car-mountable or portable probes of various sizes, such as micro-probes based on a single mobile device combined with a mini single board computer (SBC).
The mobile network monitor can be employed in a variety of applications:
Network Coverage Test
Probes can permanently monitor the neighbouring cells and detect changes in their signal strength and quality (RSSI, RSRP, RSRQ). In addition, network services can be accessed frequently to verify their availability. Any inconsistencies are detected and can promptly trigger alarms.
Operators deploying new network releases or features at a particular network site can use a portable or pre-installed probe to perform on-site functional tests of the new release. A whole test suite can be run overnight to verify, that the new features as well as established functionality is configured and working correctly, and that multi-vendor network infrastructure interworks flawlessly.
In order to obtain sample KPIs such as data throughput, packet delay, call setup time, or voice quality, LTS can programmatically access network services and transfer actual data or voice content while taking measurements. By doing this frequently, the performance of the network can be permanently monitored from the mobile subscriber point of view.
Currently, voice calls from within 4G networks are of special interest. LTS provides dedicated KPIs to investigate both the performance of circuit switched fallback LTE networks (CS-fallback and return-to-LTE time measurement) as well as the reliability and integrity of Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) calls, which can be monitored for call setup time, call drops and quality impairments.
Portable LTS probes can be employed in the live network to perform handover and cell reselection tests. LTS will log the serving cell as well as the registered radio access technology at the beginning of a test and any eventual changes to them throughout the test. This includes of course Single Radio Voice Call Continuity (SRVCC) handovers of 4G calls to circuit switched radio access technology.