3G-4G data roaming, MAP-Diameter interworking, HLR Proxy

BroadForward offers MAP-Diameter interworking to enable 3G-4G roaming. The software solution provides a fully productized implementation of the TS 29.305  function for interworking between MAP-based Gr, Gf interfaces and Diameter-based S6a, S6d, S13, S13a interfaces. The solution acts as an HLR front-end or HLR Proxy.

3G – 4G data roaming
Interworking between networks such as 2G/3G, 4G/LTE and soon 5G is important for service continuity. Operators aim to maximize mobile reach by ensuring seamless services for their subscribers across networks and networks types. Especially for smaller operators and MVNOs it often is a big (financial) hurdle to acquire the latest network technology.  BroadForward provides an affordable MAP-Diameter interworking solution to enable (data) roaming between 3G and 4G networks without the need to upgrade or install expensive equipment.

Advanced MAP-Diameter Interworking Function
BroadForward MAP-Diameter interworking is a fully productized software solution to enable 3G-4G data roaming. The solution provides flexible interworking between MAP-based Gr, Gf interfaces and Diameter-based S6a, S6d, S13, S13a interfaces, according to the 3GPP technical specification TS 29.305.  The solution enables configurable interaction with the HLR in the SS7 network for subscriber authentication, mobility and profile management. By deploying BroadForward MAP-Diameter interworking as a ‘Diameter front-end’ or ‘ HLR Proxy’ to an HLR, operators can offer 4G data roaming without the need to upgrade their HLR to HSS.

Supporting pre-release 8 HLR
Standard MAP-Diameter IWF implementations only work for recent HLR releases (3GPP release 8 and higher). This blocks the opportunity to offer 4G services for hundreds of operators and MVNOs worldwide. BroadForward developed a special 3G-LTE interworking function that connects existing, older generation HLRs (pre-release 8) to 4G/LTE networks. With this special function, BroadForward Interworking supports the creation of KASME security vector information, required for connectivity with a pre-release 8 HLR. Now operators and MVNOs are empowered to break through the typical vendor lock-in situation associated with upgrading to newer generations of HLR/HSS technology.

Wi-Fi Cellular integration
In combination with the BroadForward RADIUS module, the same solution can also support RADIUS-SS7/MAP interworking, required for Wi-Fi offload scenarios where a RADIUS EAP-SIM server needs to acquire authentication parameters from an SS7 based HLR or Diameter based HSS, for SIM based authentication.

Using BroadForward MAP-Diameter interworking has many advantages:

  • Immediate availability of complete MAP-Diameter IWF, supporting the 3GPP TS 29.305 specification, including a unique feature for creating KASME security vector information (“KASME derivation function”), enabling connectivity with pre-release 8 HLRs;
  • Proven solution, tested and deployed with all major HLR vendors;
  • On the fly adaptations to any (proprietary) Diameter or SS7 variant, through built-in flexibility to quickly adjust and customize interfaces to specific customer environments, new use cases and future system updates. No dependency on R&D availability of vendors;
  • Future-proof, extendable approach: new interfaces (e.g. various Diameter applications, RADIUS, XML/HTTP, SIP, SOAP, REST, LDAP, ENUM, SS7 etc.) and new functions (e.g. DRA/DEA) can be supported by the same solution without the need for software development;
  • On-board function of the BroadForward DSC, providing a unique combination of DRA, DEA and IWF on a single platform (integrated solution, by design);
  • Runs on any off-the-shelf hardware or in a virtualized environment. It is a 100% software based solution, hardware-agnostic and support virtualization and cloud deployment as well as containerized application deployment.

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