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									CRX Peering: Data Reconciliation


Feb 12, 2008
CDG-IRT CRX Task Force
    The CRX Model




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    Data Reconciliation Objectives

    + Balance on Session Counts
    + Balance on Volume Usage (in bytes)
    + Balance on Duration (in seconds)
    + Balance on Calculated Charges
    + Feed the appropriate Financial Clearinghouse


    + Exceptions Handling, as needed
       ▪ Reconcile Rejects
       ▪ Determine out-of-balance causes
       ▪ Determine %Variance
       ▪ Perform manual Adjustments, if necessary



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    Possible Points of Failure

    + Technical Data Exchange
       ▪   NAS IP Address, Realms, BSID’s, MCC/MNC (Carrier_ID), MBI’s

    + Data Pool (UDR Accounting)
       ▪   Uncorrelated Sessions (i.e. missing STOPs or “stale” sessions)

    + End of Day & Settlement Cut-Off
       ▪   Session Start Time versus Session End Time
       ▪   The “UDR Accommodation” factor

    + Validation (Format & Adequacy Checks)
    + Rating
       ▪   Rate Plan (Rate precision, Rating Elements, Effective Date)
       ▪   Level of Aggregation (Session-level, Monthly Carrier-level, Daily Carrier-level)
       ▪   Unit of Measure (Bytes, KB, MB, or 128 Bytes, etc.)
       ▪   Usage Rounding (Round versus Round-Up versus Truncate)
       ▪   Tiered Pricing (Progressive / Stepped) or Bulk Discount
       ▪   Calculation Rounding (decimal precision, minimum charge)

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    UDR Accommodation




    + Why it is flawed:
       ▪  It skews the true Session Count (double-counts the same Session in
          two Settlement periods)
       ▪ To be consistent, All entities – Serve carrier, CRX’s in-between, Home
          carrier – must perform this; otherwise, causes out-of-balance.
         (*Majority of existing Data Roaming implementations do not perform
          UDR Accommodation.)


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    Stale Session (Missing Final STOP)
    + This is an Exception condition
    + Cause for missing STOPs: Unknown
    + 3GPP2, WiFi/WiMax do not consider this a complete, billable Session
    + Revenue Loss for the Serve carrier believed to be within 2% threshold
    + Home carrier may choose to retail-bill based on last INTERIM update
        ▪   Retail Billing is independent of Wholesale Billing in Data Roaming
    + This is analogous to a “dropped/incomplete” call in Voice
        ▪   Some home carriers simply do not accept incomplete calls
        ▪   CIBER allows a maximum elapsed time of 5 minutes
    + There is no guarantee that all entities (Serve carrier, CRX’s, Home
      carrier) receive the same number of INTERIMs
        ▪   Special-Handling is costly to implement and does not fully-eliminate the
            chance for out-of-balance.


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      Recommendations - so CRX’s can be “In-Balance”
    + Define a process for “electronic” Technical Data Exchange
        ▪ Initial implementation of Roaming Partner “pair”
        ▪ Handling subsequent updates
        ▪ Allow minimum lead time for updates to take effect
        ▪ Disclose “unique” set-ups – i.e. multiple carriers sharing the same network

    + Define uniform UDR Accounting rules and Cut-offs
        ▪ To avoid implementation nightmare, do not allow Bilateral flexibility here
        ▪ Peering CRX’s must have the same Data Pool as a starting point
        ▪ Require Final STOP. It is the most reliable, finite end to a Session
        ▪ Use Session End Time GMT as the basis for EOD/Settlement cut-off

    + Define consistent Validation rules
        ▪ Duplicate Check criteria
        ▪ Aging
        ▪ Excess Duration


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     Recommendations (continued)
    + Define a process for Rate Plan Exchange
       ▪   Eliminate ambiguous interpretations
            – Example: Does $1 per MB mean $0.0009765625 per KB?
       ▪   List acceptable Rating options, then carriers choose from that List only
       ▪   Allow minimum lead time for new rates to take effect
       ▪   Support of new Rating Elements should be communicated in advance, as
           these may require Code Development
            – Example: 1x versus EVDO, Zone-based, Subscriber-based, QoS

    + Revise the CRX File Exchange Format
       ▪ Allow for multiple summary records per Roaming Partner “pair” as dictated by
         rate plans and/or rating elements.
       ▪ Expand the List of UOM to include minimum blocks (i.e. 100KB)

    + Define Monthly Reconciliation Process
       ▪   Adhere to file exchange due dates
       ▪   Exchange Contact List, Escalation List
       ▪   Variance Handling (e.g. acceptable Threshold) and Manual Adjustments


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    Table for Future
    + Further research of “Stale” session
       ▪ Possible causes and fix
       ▪ Continue to monitor its occurrences as a percentage of total sessions
       ▪ Quantify lost revenue in terms of usages (bytes)
       ▪ Test for consistency across entities
            – Do all INTERIM updates make it all the way to the Home carrier?
       ▪   Devise a method to special-handle, then incorporate into Data Pool
            – Example only: Force a STOP after 24 clock hours have elapsed from the
              last INTERIM update.

    + FCH Peering
       ▪ Carrier Identifier recognized by all FCH’s
       ▪ Standard FCH Feed format
       ▪ Common Settlement schedule (due dates, etc.)
       ▪ Settlement Funding should be transparent to the Carrier, even if its
         roaming partners use different FCH’s


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