The virtual EPC is targeted to mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs), cable operators that want to provide a mobile service, and traditional mobile operators that want to expand outside of their footprint, among other possible customers.
Affirmed does not provide the radio network access (RAN) infrastructure. The customer is responsible for that, whether they own it themselves or lease it from mobile operators. But Affirmed provides the virtual EPC technology to run a mobile network. In addition, it can provide operation support systems (OSS), business support systems (BSS), and lifecycle management software.
“We’re bringing all that to operators and running it on a public cloud,” said Angela Whiteford, VP of marketing and product management at Affirmed. “MVNOs are one of the sweet spots for us. A lot of MVNOs like a virtual EPC because the cost is so low. And they don’t have to set up data centers. Any place where AWS has data centers, we can support.”
With the Affirmed vEPC on AWS, mobile operators have the flexibility to add or eliminate resources as needed.
The service is available now. And Whiteford said Affirmed has been working with its customer Transatel to vet the offering. Since its inception in 2000, Transatel has launched over 150 MVNOs. It also offers a cellular solution with data connectivity for IoT.