What is CSP network automation?

CSP network automation is the process used by communication service providers (CSPs) to automate network management and provisioning for maximum efficiency. Modern organizations seek agility, consistency, and speed in traditional and cloud-centered application management. Network automation achieves these goals by implementing functions like network mapping, resource provisioning, and network testing in the cloud. Communications service providers employ automation as a cost-effective way to meet growing service demand and deliver innovation.CSP network automation is the process used by communication service providers (CSPs) to automate network management and provisioning for maximum efficiency. Modern organizations seek agility, consistency, and speed in traditional and cloud-centered application management. Network automation achieves these goals by implementing functions like network mapping, resource provisioning, and network testing in the cloud. Communications service providers employ automation as a cost-effective way to meet growing service demand and deliver innovation.

Why is network automation important for CSPs?

Communication service providers (CSPs) automate network infrastructure to better orchestrate operations and processes. Managed and scalable autonomous networks offer companies the following benefits.

Improve network operations

With artificial intelligence (AI) technologies, CSPs reduce operational costs by scaling network capabilities to meet growing demands. For example, network automation replaces manual operating procedures, so CSPs can complete specific network operations in days instead of months. 

Deliver better customer experiences

Advanced autonomous networks use machine learning to predict and mitigate network failures before they affect services. This allows CSPs to meet service level agreements (SLA) as they can respond promptly to issues and ensure minimum downtime. Moreover, autonomous network processes also reduce human errors and their respective implications. 

Read about SLAs »

Expand and scale services

Network automation ensures a seamless network delivery workflow within a common environment. Operation staff works within a shared automated framework to deploy, test, and maintain network upgrades. By removing repetitive and redundant steps, automation allows CSPs to be more responsive to demanding cellular requirements. For example, telecommunication companies deploy 5G service-based infrastructure at scale by dynamic scaling of cloud resources.

Read about 5G »

Strengthen network security

Network automation technologies allow engineers and support staff to strengthen network elements against security challenges. They use advanced analytics and automated software processes to mitigate data risks and meet regulatory compliance. Such automated processes also help network engineers develop innovative cloud-centered solutions.

Reduce infrastructure costs

Conventional network operations rely on hardware-based infrastructure. Network automation virtualizes operations by deploying and orchestrating them with software-defined networking (SDN). SDN is an approach that regulates hardware in virtual environments. It allows CSPs to save on capital expenditure and operational costs.

What are some network automation use cases for CSPs?

Network automation provides communication service providers (CSPs) with agility, scalability, and security when developing network applications. Here are some other practical use cases.

Cloud-centered 5G core, radio access networks, and edge

Telecommunication companies apply software-defined networks to overcome the limitations of a centralized network controller when implementing 5G services. Network automation solutions allow them to expand network capacities across a dense 5G network with network slicing. Your users can enjoy real-time services on high-availability 5G spectrums. 

BSS/OSS transformation and automation

For CSPs, network automation improves enterprise business support systems and operations support systems (BSS/OSS). By automating business processes with cloud network functions, you can scale quickly and flexibly to provide a better customer experience. For example, you can streamline customer support across multiple channels with voice and chat. 

5G monetization

5G rollouts provide new revenue opportunities for innovation-driven companies. Rollouts automate multi-access edge computing (MEC) and applications on low-latency, high-capacity cellular networks. For example, you can deploy telecom solutions on secured and connected cloud environments. 

Cloud migration

CSPs adopt cloud technologies with scalable implementations to strengthen product strategies. Cloud providers assist them to shift on-premises workloads seamlessly to the cloud. This prepares businesses for long-term growth and transformation in the digital space. 

Data and analytics

CSP network automation generates valuable business intelligence by analyzing big data on cloud storage. You can use the analytics to provide personalized and engaging customer journeys. 

AI/ML in the customer experience

CSPs onboard and retain customers with automation guided by artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML) on network processes. You can anticipate customer demands, market trends, and security challenges with predictive analytics.

What are some examples of CSP network automation?

Amazon Web Services (AWS) offers technologies for communication service providers (CSPs). Here are some examples of how AWS customers have benefitted from CSP network automation.

Improving service availability for streaming platforms

Content streaming providers use network automation software to manage traffic congestion as well as improve service availability and customer satisfaction. In a legacy environment, network engineers work on multiple nodes to provision computing resources separately, which affects service efficiency. Cloud network automation capabilities allow streaming services to balance traffic across distributed nodes effortlessly.

For example, Airtel uses Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (Amazon EKS) to avoid downtime for Wyn Studio subscribers.

Read how Airtel uses AWS »

Cost-effective cloud migration for telecommunication companies

Telecommunication companies (telcos) face scalability challenges against growing consumer demands while operating with on-premises network infrastructure. Scaling telco solutions in a hardware-centric environment might cause unplanned interruptions. Adopting cloud network automation allows telcos to reduce infrastructure costs and improve their time to market.

For example, Dialog Axiata uses Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) Spot Instances for scaling microservices across distributed network nodes. The move helped the telco optimize operational costs by 18%.

Read how Dialog Axiata uses AWS »

Reducing time to market for financial solutions 

Digital transformation encourages financial institutions to expand their services across broader customer segments. Many financial institutions operate with conventional data infrastructure, which complicates efforts to deploy and scale new services. An autonomous network design allows these institutions to overcome traditional limitations and deploy at scale.

For example, BENEFIT built an electronic Know Your Customer (eKYC) solution on Amazon EC2 and completed it in 8 weeks.

Read how BENEFIT uses AWS »

Fraud detection for payment processors

Payment processing companies are responsible for providing secure transaction environments to their users. The companies apply stringent measures to detect data patterns that might indicate fraudulent transaction activities. Network automation allows companies to develop fraud detection modules quickly with machine learning technologies.

For example, SLA Digital creates new revenue streams for mobile operators and online merchants around the world through seamless and secure carrier billing solutions. It uses Amazon Fraud Detector to build a fraud detection model without manually provisioning physical infrastructure. 

Read how SLA Digital uses AWS »

How does network automation work?

Network automation systems use software technologies like network telemetry, closed-loop monitoring, and artificial intelligence (AI) to provision, test, manage, and monitor resources on cloud infrastructure. It involves virtualizing operations on a software-defined network.

For example, you can set up virtual machines on the cloud and integrate them with physical network infrastructure. For communication service providers (CSPs), this approach provides greater flexibility in managing networking hardware. 

We share several approaches to network automation below.

API-based network automation

An API is a collection of data exchange methods that allow software programs to communicate. Some automation solutions use APIs to automatically provision network resources. For example, instead of manually configuring the required resources, you can make API requests from software programs to accomplish the same tasks.

Read about APIs »

Intelligent network automation

Intelligent network automation uses machine learning technologies to analyze big data when provisioning network resources. The automated software trains the underlying machine learning model with business-specific data. This provides end-to-end automation that meets specific business objectives with minimum human intervention.  

Intent-based network automation

Intent-based networking is an extension of network automation driven by machine learning. Intent-based networking uses deep learning—an advanced AI technology that mimics the human brain—to provision network resources.

In an intent-based network automation system, the AI software optimizes the configuration to meet specific business goals or intents. It also predicts potential deviations from a determined intent and recommends appropriate mitigative measures. 

How does AWS support CSP network automation?

AWS provides end-to-end automation solutions that enable communication service providers (CSPs) to accelerate their cloud transformation efforts. You can overcome technical, operational, and investment challenges when innovating solutions for 5G opportunities. Read more about AWS solutions at AWS for Telecom.

CSPs deliver superior customer experience, build scalable software-defined networks, and strengthen security posture with various AWS services:

  • AWS Wavelength provides low-latency network services by embedding AWS compute resources within 5G networks
  • AWS Telco Network Builder automates and accelerates the deployment of telecommunication networks on AWS
  • AWS Outposts extends 5G capabilities to on-premises and edge locations to support low-latency workloads

Get started with CSP network automation by creating a free AWS account today.