The shift in value from products to services has been ongoing for several years now, and has opened up a whole new world of professional services and Managed Support Services. It’s the strategy of some of the world’s most innovative companies: IBM, for instance. And yet there are many areas that are still untapped, and have the potential to impact the true customer experience.

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2011 marks the 10th anniversary of Carrier Ethernet services launched by the Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF). The technology has penetrated deep into global communication businesses, both as a service and as a network infrastructure cornerstone, with the entire business ecosystem investing in this technology. Here are a few statistics that show just how deep the services have been integrated.

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Operators today are involved in a vicious cycle of adding bandwidth in order to support bandwidth hungry applications, which in turn is spawning even hungrier applications. This is driving operators to deploy next generation technologies such as LTE, which is proving to be one of the biggest “spends” in the history of telecommunications. The problem is that the operator’s Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) is not increasing at the same rate as the demand for mobile broadband, driving the need for operators to innovate to maximize revenue and optimize CAPEX and OPEX.

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What’s common to Bill Gates, Bjarne Stroustrup, Linus Torvalds, and James Gosling? You know who they are; they are all famous software engineers known for writing code. But how many famous software test engineers do you know? Probably none. A comparison of the results of a Google search for famous software developers vs. famous software testers will show that most people don’t know either. Why is this? Because testers don’t create anything, right? Wrong. Testing is as much a part of the creative process as is development. It’s even becoming a “hot” topic, even a strategy.

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Following up on our first webinar for the Americas on “Addressing the Top 10 Challenges of LTE EPC Testing,” we ran a second webinar for Europe. This again generated more questions from the participants, all of which could not be answered during the webinar itself. So, we've collected and answered all the questions below. We hope they are informative for those of you seeking to better understand the nuances of LTE EPC testing.

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More than a decade ago when mobile infrastructure companies, service providers, and device makers started working on Location Based Services (LBS), analysts predicted LBS as "the next big thing” in the mobile services market. Operators had expected to increase their average revenue per user (ARPU) by deploying location services. Network infrastructure vendors made significant investments on increasing the accuracy of a user’s location using various technologies like GPS, AGPS, and cell-IDs. And, application vendors and device makers were pretty excited about the possibilities of LBS. But, "the next big thing” never happened.

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