Converging Edge Caching and Computing Power for Simultaneous Mobile and MSO Networks (2018)

By Sandeep Katiyar, Nokia Bell Labs Consulting

Broadcast and demand-based content networks have been pushed to their limits to reduce latency and to provide faster buffering to seamlessly deliver content. From massive data centers to edge based cache servers, caching has followed Multiple System Operators (MSOs) to the cellular edges to fulfill the demand of its subscribers in delivering emerging latency-sensitive services. Mobile and wireline operators have regularly increased bandwidth to meet growing data and new interactive service demands. But bandwidth itself does not address latency challenges. Caching has been used in services such as YouTube and Netflix to reduce video content delivery and web service latency. MSO deep fiber penetration and the future migration of cable hubs to edge clouds to enable virtualized services can be mutually beneficial to wireline and mobile services by bringing better content to mobile subscribers, providing higher quality reduced latency services, and increasing revenue.

On the other hand, with changing user habits and the resulting reprioritization of mobile data over voice services, along with smart device adoption and usage of personalized and enterprise-level mobility applications, mobile network operators face significant challenges related to redesigning the backhaul to support capacity and latency requirements for 5G deployments, If we closely look to the 5G requirements as depicted in Figure 1, densification of mobile networks is required to bring 5G to full use, leading to a dependency and need for high bandwidth access networks and content caching closer to the edge.

Besides raw data management, the low latency signaling required to coordinate and manage application data flow strains the network in terms of its performance. Greater capacity, unencumbered transmission and continuous coverage are needed. To make this happen specially for growing mobile data traffic i.e.,video, the mobile network deployment method needs to be changed.

This paper provides an overview of how MSOs can provide caching to reduce latency for mobile networks. We look at cache tradeoffs, define a high-level architecture and finally discuss a new business service/opportunity for MSO edge content aggregation to meet the needs of mobile services,

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