How Symphonica automates provisioning for next-gen broadband

As service providers increasingly roll out direct internet access (DIA) over gigabit passive optical networks (GPON) and other next-gen broadband services, automating provisioning and activation will be central to hitting customer experience targets; enabling zero-touch operations; and reducing operating expenses, especially as volumes scale up. 

Here we take a close look at how Intraway’s Symphonica, a true, no-code, cloud-native service provisioning, activation, and orchestration solution, automates provisioning for direct internet access (DIA) over GPON services, enabling the core of a zero-touch order-to-cash process. 

Why GPON?

Consumer and business demand for more and higher quality broadband capacity continues to rise. ICT markets already anticipate enhanced services like 8K video streaming and cloud-based industrial automation becoming available. These can require substantial increases in capacity with more guaranteed quality and multiservice capability than either broadband or fiber networks may offer now.

As a result, interest in gigabit passive optical networking (GPON) continues to increase. The global GPON market is projected to grow from roughly $10 billion worldwide today to more than $30 billion by 2028 (Source: Global Market Insights). GPON is one of several next-generation broadband solutions that have gained market momentum. It uses an efficient 2-tier architecture and is designed to support multiple, interactive services on a common fiber.

Check out our 5-minute demo video for a closer look at how Symphonica automates provisioning for next-gen broadband services like DIA over GPON.

Automating the process at scale

When breaking down and decomposing any provisioning process, it is natural to look at things one order at a time. But it is important to remember that it is just one type of order flow of many, possibly thousands at any given time. Also, any one customer order can comprise multiple business, service, and technical orders that must be fulfilled for the service to be delivered to the customer. This mass of complex processes can scale and become cumbersome very quickly without automation.

In this example, Symphonica receives a service order from a customer relationship management (CRM) system or other business support system (BSS) for a DIA over GPON service. Symphonica’s subscriber management component utilizes a CRM emulator which allows the system user to see order and customer details; to gain context around the customer scenario; and to visualize all the steps and dependencies involved in delivering the ordered service. 

Once Symphonica has received the service order, its job is to orchestrate and activate multiple services across the OLT manager, which is the central office or headend component in a GPON architecture; in the edge router, the customer premises component; and in the core network. 

Configuring the service

An order will generate tasks which technicians can claim via the Symphonica Tech Assist app. One of the primary tasks, naturally, is to install an optical network terminal (ONT) for the customer. Using the app, the tech can scan a QR code on the device to capture its serial number and associate it with the order in progress so that it can be zero-touch activated.

GPON services

Now, while the end user device is ready to be activated, the service depends on sophisticated provisioning both in the core network and the GPON controller. For example, Symphonica configures the GPON manager with a series of commands sent via SOAP using a Symphonica connector. 

But Symphonica also provides the core design and visualization capabilities needed to automate the process, to understand sequences and dependencies, and to monitor the execution of visualized process flows in real-time. 

GPON services

Assuring it works

As process flows execute, technicians can be prompted automatically with notifications, via the Tech Assist app, of order execution status, when their next tasks are ready to be performed, or if other follow up actions – like total or partial fallout processes – are necessary. Techs also have the option, via the app, to investigate every component of the order to see its status and whether there are any issues associated with it.

Once the configurations are complete, the process flows query information from the network and installs the device itself. With installation and activation complete, the service can be validated as active and accurately provisioned from the customer’s perspective, after which the order can be closed. Symphonica stores all the relevant order information in its inventory to associate services with devices and customers, thus offering an up-to-date customer-centric record that reflects the actual state of the network.

In the end, this automated approach turns what can be a multi-day service activation process into a 5-minute exercise in which every step but physical device installation is automated end-to-end.

Gearing up for growth

Service providers face many new market opportunities and threats as they strive to find new sources of revenue growth. Each new generation of broadband is being propelled by demand, but delivering it with a world-class customer experience, at scale, to a variety of customer types, with many potential flavors of configuration is a different challenge. It requires automation, observability, and the ability to adapt process flows on the fly via configuration – not customization – to make it work right continuously. 

Check out our 5-minute demo video for a closer look at how Symphonica automates provisioning for next-gen broadband services like DIA over GPON.

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