Will Mobile Operators WiSE Up?

Executives at Global Crossing Ltd.
hope they will. The carrier services group has been working the spring trade show circuit with a new service offering targeted at mobile operators. Called the Wireless Service Exchange, or WiSE, the new service seeks to cut costs of mobile-to-mobile long-distance traffic through peering.

Mike Leary, director of wireless marketing for Global Crossing, says about half of a mobile operator’s traffic originates and terminates on mobile phones. Of that, about 20 percent is sent to a long-distance carrier for transport. In high-volume markets, wireless operators directly connect two markets with private line facilities. “They have found that to be an engineering challenge,” says Leary. “It consumes resources that can be better used for developing things like deploying their own new products and features for their customers.”

As an alternative, Global Crossing is offering wireless carriers a way to get from one mobile switching center (MSC) to another bypassing the incumbent local exchange carrier. “To the extent that we can keep that traffic on our network and just carry it between their MSCs, we eliminate the access cost,” Leary says, explaining the access charge can range from half a penny to more than two cents per minute depending on the ILEC and the type of traffic.

In phase one, which is being implemented, Global Crossing will support traffic that originates and terminates on a single carrier’s network. “The next step is [supporting] calls that originate on mobile carrier A’s network and terminate on mobile carrier B’s network,” Leary says. “We are providing services to multiple wireless carriers and connected to multiple MSCs already, and it’s a fairly short step to go from one carrier’s mobile-to-mobile traffic on-net to carrying mobile-to-mobile traffic between two carriers who are connected to us on net. “WiSE phase two is planned for a fall release. Phase three,” Leary says, “will extend the option to wireline traffic that terminates on networks of mobile operators that already are using the exchange.”

Global Crossing Ltd.

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