BroadForward provides 5G network functions as well as interworking with legacy 3G, 4G, Fixed/Wi-Fi functions. Our products enable 5G services for MNOs, MVNOs and Private LTE/5G networks while optimally leveraging investments of existing networks and systems. Our 5G signaling solutions include the Service Communication Proxy (SCP), Binding Support Function (BSF), Security Edge Protection Proxy (SEPP), 5G EIR and 4G-5G interworking.
Enabling the transition from 3G and 4G to the 5G NG core
According to the NGMN, service providers want to achieve network convergence – and prevent duplication of network functions. Many operators have invested heavily in their 4G EPC, going through great lengths to incorporate Diameter based products next to their SS7 assets. 5G will not only introduce new core network elements, it will also introduce a new signaling protocol: HTTP/2. With 5G standardization making progress, the time has come to consider the available options for the road ahead to 5G.
5G network functions
The BroadForward product portfolio includes fully converged 5G software based network functions that support service providers with their network transition from legacy to the 5G Next Generation Core.
BroadForward’s 5G signaling solutions include:
- Service Communication Proxy (SCP TS 23.501)
- Binding Support Function (BSF TS 129.513)
- Security Edge Protection Proxy (SEPP TS 33.501)
- 5G Equipment Identity Register (EIR TS 29.511)
- Interworking function for signaling between 2G, 3G, 4G, 5G, IMS, Fixed/Wi-Fi and IT
- 5G Gateway Mobile Location Center (GMLC TS 29.518)
- 5G Number Portability (ENUM)
- 5G Security (e.g. Firewall)
Preparing for convergence
Convergence requires products that work for and across different domains, networks, technologies, vendors and services. Those products must also support interworking and gradual migration/transition to 5G. This applies to investments in new 5G network functions as well as legacy product replacements (e.g. STP, DRA).
BroadForward is the vendor of choice for next generation signaling products and network applications, designed to support service providers targeting convergence across legacy and next generation networks. This creates the landscape by which the new 5G network will thrive without becoming another technology silo.
5G product design and architecture
BroadForward products are software based, access network independent, and multi-protocol by design. All products support virtualization and cloud deployment (VMware, KVM, OpenStack, Amazon etc.) as well as containerized application deployment (Docker, Kubernetes). Most vendors provide loosely coupled signaling point solutions, consisting of multiple legacy products integrated as an afterthought or patchwork solution. BroadForward products are based on a single engine design, optimized for converging networks. They enable uniform operations, central IT integration and real-time subscriber management across access networks. Furthermore all BroadForward products are GUI powered and using a single capacity license with a free traffic mix across supported protocols (SS7, Diameter, RADIUS, HTTP etc.).
Service Communication Proxy (SCP)
The BroadForward Service Communication Proxy (SCP) enables an important role within the 5G Service Based Architecture (SBA), providing functions ranging from simplifying network topology by applying signaling aggregation and routing, to load balancing, overload handling and message parameter harmonization. Furthermore the SCP performs delegate discovery and provides communication authorization and security functions. Furthermore the BroadForward SCP provides an Interworking function for signaling between 2G, 3G, 4G, 5G, IMS, Fixed/Wi-Fi and IT.
Binding Support Function (BSF)
The BroadForward Binding Support Function (BSF) stores and provides binding information, for various sessions originated on multiple interfaces but are sharing common criteria, for example sessions from a single subscriber. In the 5G Core, the BSF will be used for binding an application-function request to a specific PCF instance. This function is comparable to the PCRF binding function provided by a 4G Diameter Routing Agent (DRA), for VoLTE and VoWi-Fi.
Security Edge Protection Proxy (SEPP)
The BroadForward Security Edge Protection Proxy (SEPP) enables secure interconnect between 5G networks. The SEPP ensures end-to-end confidentiality and/or integrity between source and destination network for all 5G interconnect roaming messages. Additionally the SEPP performs centralized roaming partner management, topology hiding, and throttling of incoming signaling messages.
5G Equipment Identity Register (EIR)
The BroadForward 5G EIR provides a single, unified access point for authentication of mobile devices in the network, supporting 5G network interfacing, in addition to the existing 2G/3G, 4G/LTE, and IT interfaces. The 5G EIR (3GPP TS 29.511) is compliant with the increased security definitions of 5G; it will check the status of equipment’s identity and safeguard the network by preventing access of blacklisted devices.