Operators use policy control to provide a difference to service delivery and personalization, and offer self-service controls at various levels, this will ensure better customer loyalty and reduce churn, and result in creating better revenue models thereby increasing revenues for operators. Policy management helps operators dynamically control network resources with policies that work in real-time based on subscribers, services, and depending on usage.
With the help of charging control mechanisms, usage records get rated and charges are levied accordingly in real-time. Policy and Charging Control (PCC) is an evolving technology and is seeing itself placed on top of the Business Support System (BSS) stack. It enables network controls that form the building blocks for new data and data-enabled products and helps operators make and collect money in real-time.
PCC is engineered to take real-time decisions over the subscriber’s access to network resources based on volumes such as usage, time, bandwidth speed, and application type. With the help of PCC, subscriber and session-aware policy decisions get enabled and triggered in real-time any of predefined events and conditions, like changes in the subscriber profile, account plan, source of network traffic, and network capacity.
Ideally, the PCC architecture consists of several functional units, such as Policy & Charging Rules Function (PCRF), Serving Gateway (SG), On-line charging system (OCS), Offline charging system (OFCS), Subscription Profile Repository (SPR), and Application Function (AF). Most of these functional units are related, provide data for control and fee calculation, and ensure the quality of service (QoS), and bandwidth speed.
The need for PCC is important. It offers operators control of subscriber entitlement and network resources. It helps create charge for that control with the help of an integrated framework that works and helps in real-time policy management and charging. Operators now can offer more services such as on-demand and offer real-time upgrades with the help of running policy and a common framework charging.
Rules for subscribers
PCC rule comprises the information required to enable user plane detection of the policy control and proper charging for a service data flow.
Two diverse types of PCC rules exist: Dynamic rules and Predefined rules.
Dynamic PCC rules are provisioned by the policy control function (PCF) to the session management function (SMF). In contrast, predefined PCC rules are configured into the SMF, and only referenced by the PCF.
- Supports most of the PCC service quality standards and charging parameters
- Offers credit management and can generate charging data records (CDRs) for purposes of billing systems
- Support a graphics user interface (GUI)
- Supports Radius and Diameter interface
- Advanced Analytics & Machine Learning
- Dynamic QoS Control
- Multi-vendor interoperability
- Dashboard-based monitoring
- Platform/Vendor/Hardware/Network Agnostic
Policy control is needed to enforce charging decisions; for example, a user who runs out of credit in the ongoing session will get terminated. Policy control also includes QoS control, like a user cannot get specific bandwidth during peak hours and charging also will include accounting for network dimensioning. Industry leader STL has innovated solutions to help operators realize how PCC can be used effectively. For a detailed understanding of how this helps, read STL’s digital control and charging (dPCC) to get a better understanding.
Building Digital Future with Policy Control and Charging – Evolution from 4G to 5G
The next-gen PCC solutions can provide a clear path for 4G to 5G evolution and are aligned with the industry evolution from non-standalone to standalone architecture. STL dPCC solution is one such future proof model which is, pre-integrated with our existing dAAA, DRA, Digital Service Provisioning and Intellza solutions and it can be easily deployed in different modes depending on the needs of the CSPs.
PCC is engineered to take real-time decisions over the subscriber’s access to network resources based on volumes such as usage, time, bandwidth speed, and application type. Operators can now offer more on-demand and offer real-time upgrades with the help of running policy and a common framework charging.
STL dPCC, a cloud-native integrated Policy Control & Charging solution that not only controls subscriber entitlement and network resource allocation but also provides a highly flexible monetization capability through a truly elastic convergent charging engine. Powered by DevOps, Analytics, Web-scale & Network Software (DAWN), dPCC is a dynamic policy control and charging platform that offers policy enforcement and convergent charging capability to CSPs in real-time.
By running policy and charging from a common framework, operators now have extreme flexibility to create innovative offerings such as on-demand services, promotions, real-time upgrades, service passes in minutes. Read more about STL’s digital control and charging, the best in the industry, and explore the endless possibilities to web-scale your Business to cloud nine.