Published: November 26, 2019
Aterlo Networks is a networking solutions company, based in Waterloo. Formed in 2014, they boast a team of 17 employees. The company is known for developing innovative solutions for internet providers, network managers and video streaming users. Aterlo has brought their flagship product, Preseem, which aims to address Quality of Experience (QoE) issues for fixed wireless users, to CENGN for a Network Application project in order to validate an improved capacity of 15 gigabits/second (Gbps).
Taking a look at Wireless Networks
Wireless networks are a modern innovation that we take for granted. They have the incredible ability to connect people around the world and give us access to a limitless library of content. What’s more, fixed wireless internet is a less expensive alternative to deploy than wired internet,
especially in areas outside of the urban city centres, where the cost of implementing direct internet is multiplied by the low population density and environmental barriers.
Of course, the reason we aren’t all on wireless networks is that they not as stable. Fixed wireless networks are susceptible to instability due to weather or being overwhelmed by spikes in usage. Unfortunately, this is a reality facing most rural communities in Canada and abroad.
The importance for stable networks has grown as businesses and social services have become more dependent on new technologies that require constant connection to the internet. Due to this, wireless internet service providers (WISPs) have been looking for a way to improve their service offering to meet the needs of their clients.
With Preseem, Aterlo helps WISPs as well as other ISPs with fixed wireless networks deliver great service by measuring, analyzing, and improving the subscriber quality of experience (QoE).
Improving the Fixed Wireless Network
To measure the real QoE being delivered by ISPs, Preseem collects billions of metrics per day directly from subscriber traffic and network elements such as access points. Unlike other traditional network monitoring tools, Preseem analyzes this huge dataset to extract meaningful and actionable insights. These insights help network managers to identify parts of the network that deliver poor experience, make better network capacity planning decisions as enable the support team to quickly identify root causes of customer complaints. Without Preseem, network operators and managers have no way to accurately understand their end user’s QoE.
Further, Preseem uses advanced queue management techniques to help network operators to enforce their subscriber plan speeds (different packages they sell) while improving the QoE delivered to them. Even when the network or subscriber’s connection is congested, Preseem ensures that the internet doesn’t feel slow and interactive applications like VOIP or online gaming work smoothly alongside heavier applications like streaming video or Windows updates.
WISPs need to run the Preseem software in-line in their network (next to the core/edge router) at a spot where Preseem can access all the internet traffic going through it. Preseem can run on typical off-the-shelf hardware, virtual machines or on appliances sold by Aterlo. The number of Preseem instances (or hardware boxes) required depends on how centralized or decentralized the network of an ISP is.
Thanks to Preseem, fixed wireless network owners and managers can proactively improve their network and deliver a better experience to their subscribers. This results in happier customers, reduction in support costs, and increased profitability. Preseem empowers ISPs to grow their business and compete effectively with other broadband providers using traditional cable, DSL or fibre technologies.
Preseem can, therefore, go a long way to support ISPs close the digital divide between urban communities and those in more rural or remote settings.
Path to Commercialization
Preseem has been on the market since 2017, but Aterlo is preparing to ready their solution for a larger customer base. Most Preseem customers have less than 10Gbps going through a single appliance today, but with larger potential customers on the horizon, Aterlo is preparing to improve Preseem’s offering.
Another focus for Aterlo’s customer expansion, is validation at scale using encapsulated traffic. To deliver optimized services to WISPs, Preseem will need to be able to process this type of traffic in high volumes.
The CENGN Advantage
During their project, Aterlo will be seeking to demonstrate that Preseem can accommodate 15-20Gbps speeds as well as its ability to successfully process encapsulated traffic. In order to validate the solution’s functionality, CENGN is providing Aterlo with a bare metal server and a space for the Preseem unit within the testbed.
In fact, hardware hosting is one of the largest reasons that Aterlo has come to CENGN. Other public clouds do not support hardware hosting, and the CENGN testbed is a safe and secure location for their appliance to be tested on. A CENGN project also gives Aterlo access to powerful compute resources that we provide at no cost.
Containing the project within a closed CENGN project space provides an extra benefit for Aterlo as they can test their solution, while it is being fed traffic directly from the bare metal server. This will allow for the accurate measure of throughput without the extraneous variables on how much traffic loss occurred through wireless connections.
Upon completing their CENGN project, Aterlo will be primed and ready to confidently address the requirements of large-scale customers and increase their presence within the market!
CENGN is happy to be hosting Aterlo’s network application, Preseem, and giving the company access to our infrastructure services as they work to complete this project!
Aterlo is a growing Canadian business that is using the services at CENGN through the Next Generation Network Program (NGNP). The NGNP is a Government of Ontario program offered through a partnership between CENGN and the Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) that is providing small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across Ontario access to the CENGN Testbed. CENGN’s digital infrastructure is connecting SMEs like Aterlo to state-of-the-art equipment and network services, which will allow these companies to test and validate their solutions.
Are you interested in completing a CENGN project? Learn more by clicking the button below!