iCore OTA Prepaid Roaming MSC
A challenge for GSM network operators in developing or remote markets and regions worldwide is the enabling of services for users that roam into their network. In instances where roaming agreements have not yet been established between the user’s home network and the local operators, users will experience a loss of service, and operators have lost revenue opportunity. Typically the only option for a mobile user is to purchase a local SIM card for his mobile phone.
The iCore Over-the-Air (OTA) Prepaid Roaming MSC provides an avenue to capture these potential subscribers via a dynamically allocated prepaid service profile. OTA Prepaid Roaming leverages the capabilities of the existing prepaid system and SMS to provide temporary services to roaming subscribers from operators that do not have local roaming agreements in place. The benefit of OTA Local Prepaid Roaming is continuity of services to roaming users. It can be leveraged by operators in developing regions and by new operators that are still in the process of developing their roaming agreements.
OTA Prepaid Roaming avoids the problems created by the inherent limitations of conventional prepaid services to address these subscribers. By and large, the prepaid systems deployed in GSM networks today are CAMEL-based and typically require previous knowledge of the subscriber and coordination of profile and services with the Home Location Register. OTA Prepaid Roaming is an extension of the standard prepaid system offered by Tecore to address these subscribers who would otherwise be denied service.
How It Works
When a roaming user first enters the local network and attempts to perform a location update, rather than being rejected, he is allowed to access the system. He is then allocated a temporary number (MSISDN) which is sent to the user via SMS as part of a welcoming message. Once the user receives this message he is able to receive inbound calls to the assigned number. To enable the use of outbound calls and other services, the user would purchase a Top-up card from a local retailer and apply it to their account. The service supports wireless and wireline calling, including origination, termination and short message services.
OTA Prepaid Roaming enables roaming in cases where roaming services would not otherwise be provided to users, thus improving the overall experience of the mobile user. The simplicity of the OTA Prepaid Roaming allows the network operator to leverage its own prepaid system and Top-up cards to localize service delivery. The feature is integrated with Tecore’s mobile core network systems, and does not require the operator to deploy any additional equipment or systems.
Further, the service does not interfere with any existing roaming agreements that the network operator has in place. In cases where there is a roaming agreement between operators, the user would be authenticated on the network and the OTA feature does not activate.
Features & Benefits
- Unique capability for GSM network operators to provide service to visiting users in the absence of roaming agreements between carriers
- Improved subscriber experience: continuity of service
- New revenue opportunity for network operators
- Service does not require previous knowledge of subscriber or coordination of profile and services with HLR
- Roaming subscriber is assigned a temporary number via SMS to receive inbound calls; and can purchase a top-up card to make outbound calls
- Does not interfere with existing roaming agreements