broadbandawards2With just two weeks to go until this year’s Broadband InfoVision Awards ceremony in Amsterdam, we preview the shortlisted entries for the category Best Broadband Experience Award.

This award recognises an excellent product, service or innovation in the area of Customer Experience, Service Management and Operations by a telecom solutions vendor or a broadband operator/service provider (fixed or wireless) launched between July 2011 and June 2012 which offered significant new prospects for increased revenue, managing costs, improving quality or increasing customer satisfaction.

US firm ASSIA has reached the shortlisted for its DSL Expresse 2.7 network diagnostic software, designed to extend DSLAM reach, automate the repair/re-profiling of DSLs, improve the efficiency of customer care operations, and improve the operator’s ability to manage vendor relationships through network-level analysis.

DSL Expresse 2.7 also offers the option of virtually slicing the overall DSL network down to the port level via multi-tenancy management, which not only allows ISPs to share the hardware infrastructure and outside plant investments but also enables them to introduce the latest DSL technologies such as vectoring to deliver 100Mbps reliably to the home, through managing a mixed-binder environment.

Furthermore, a regulatory body can also be established as a “super user” to verify the quality of the networks within its jurisdiction and potentially enforce performance/coexistence rules through the active use of this platform.

Belgian telco Belgacom has been nominated for the upgrades it has made to its managed IPTV service ‘Belgacom TV’ which enable users to access clearer, faster and more personalised TV services. The upgrade was implemented last June and offers a range of enhancements, including improved menus, increased readability, a high-performance search system, and personalised recommendations of TV programs and movies for each family member.

The telco aimed to enable customers to “find the right content for me” without changing any of their hardware, through automatic software updates. This goal was achieved through: offering an improved menu (thanks a 16/9 HD display), with faster zapping and navigation with more images; faster and better searches; and personalised recommendations, based on daily usage and tastes.

French telco Bouygues Telecom developed the user interface for its new Bbox Sensation gateway/STBs using the same navigational principles for every service available via the device, following four fundamental rules: keep it simple, intuitive and smooth; offer high-definition (1280×720) resolution; keep interactions visual rather than text-based where possible; and look after the graphics, using realistic ones that also integrate perspective, carousel and cover-flow effects.

In developing the new interface, Bouygues sought to emphasise the premium nature of the new boxes, and make them accessible to all clients, young or old. The telco also aimed to make the Bbox sensation the multimedia hub of the home, allowing users to manage all of their personal content via the set-top box, but also via personal devices.

Malaysia’s Green Packet has been shortlisted for its Mobile Data Offload and Customer Experience Intelligence solution platforms, which range from transparent mobile offload to Wi-Fi, selective offload with policy-driven control, secured offload and inter-working, and a reporting and analytic engine.

The Mobile Data Offload platform is a solution suite of device-client software that converge mobile data offloading, connectivity experience and mobility through three products: Intouch Simple Data Offload, Intouch Dynamic Data Offload, and Intouch Seamless Data Offload.

The Mobile Data Offload suite can be extended to include QoS monitoring element, important in the deployment of Wi-Fi offload strategy. The Instinq Analytics and Reporting engine is designed with the aim of delivering connectivity analytics and reporting relevant to user experience – Wi-Fi offloading analytics and network analytics.

French telco Orange has been nominated for its Orange WiFi kit, designed to address Orange’s core strategy of improving customer’s quality of experience and providing access to the best network (e.g. 3G or WiFi) everywhere.

Taking the form of a free application launched last June, the WiFi kit enables users to log in to trusted and certified networks quickly and easily with simple one-click access, protecting both customer credentials and traffic. It also provides intelligent management of the connection, giving priority to the private WiFi network when known or preferred by the device for a better user experience.

By offering the app, Orange is also aiming to maximise the usage and adoption of its WiFi network services, and reports that the cost of developing the product was very low, as it could leverage existing mobile broadband kits. A preliminary user survey suggests satisfaction levels rate above 77% for the app.

Finally, French firm SoftAtHome (backed by Orange, Sagemcom and Etisalat) has been shortlisted for its CloudAtHome software solution, which provides operators with an easy-to-deploy software solution on both managed and retail devices that make it simpler for subscribers to transparently access and control content distributed between the home devices and the cloud. And since all the services are exposed as Web Services, they can be accessed by any device running HTML5 including set-top boxes, connected TV, mobiles and tablets through a new unified user experience.

CloudAtHome is made up of two main components: a cloud-based component that is deployed in an operator’s network, backing up up home content, aggregating content coming from the backup and from the network, and preparing it for access by different devices; and a home-based component that can be deployed on different managed devices in the home (including the home gateway and set-top boxes) depending on the operator’s choice and strategy.

The home-based component contains all the home-based features that are best hosted on the home side, including the following services: aggregation of content coming from different devices in the home LAN using DLNA technology; preparation for cloud back up with privacy and profiling rules; and preparation for access of content in the cloud by multiple and different home devices.

This year’s Broadband InfoVision awards will be held in Amsterdam on October 17th. For more information and to register, please visit http://www.broadbandworldforum.com/awards/about-the-awards/


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