TowerCo Case study
Boosting operational efficiencies with the power of AI
We worked with one of the world’s leading providers of telecommunication infrastructure, who build and manage networks of tens of thousands of towers. They provide the much-needed tower operations and services that enable leading mobile network operators to connect billions of customers to the digital world.
Our TowerCo customer operates across many different countries expanding and building new cell phone towers.They are committed to innovate with solutions that connect more customers to stronger, better mobile communications and improve the lives of people, communities and businesses through faster connectivity.
The customer was struggling with a very complex operation that has grown rapidly through a range of acquisitions of cell phone towers from other operators or directly from mobile operators.
As a result they inherited a fragmented infrastructure with a mix of towers that offer basic remote monitoring tools and a large number of towers with no remote monitoring tools at all. The network team rapidly rolled out solutions to monitor tower performance remotely to close the gap on the lack of visibility of key operational metrics.
Through a wide program of improvements, our customer deployed a number of initiatives to improve operational efficiency and move to more cost effective operation and sustainable energy options.
The initiatives deployed include:
> Remote monitoring solutions
> Battery and diesel generator upgrades programme
> Solar panels installed on a range of towers
> Optimisation of site assets installed for optimum performance and cost
But despite their own extensive program of updates, the customer wasn’t seeing the results they were expecting. They did not have enough visibility over their assets and how they were being optimised to deliver ROI.
Identifying the next-level of improvements to make full use of their new assets was hard. Implementing these efficiencies at scale against the backdrop of a continuously changing environment compounded the challenge. For example, weather changes may affect solar panel performance, while different geographies present different grid outages or increasing energy costs.
Power swiftly implemented the Intelligent Tower Suite underpinned by our proprietary AI platform. This integrates easily with the customer’s existing infrastructure without costly site-by-site kit installation.
Our solution delivers unique insights based on site-specific operational profiles. Our machine learning capabilities were able to quickly scale the insights for hundreds and thousands of sites with minimum manual intervention.
We then deployed our unique AI models to identify inefficient operations or anomalies and flag them for immediate investigation. This revealed issues not previously visible to the operations team through standard remote monitoring tools, such as:
> Sites where faulty equipment, such as air-conditioning or rectifiers, were incorrectly
using more grid energy than required.
> Solar panels that were not correctly connected and therefore not fully-utilised.
> Frequent refuelling visits when diesel generators had more than three months of
operations in the tank.
> Wasted solar energy because there was not enough battery storage available.
Our Intelligent Remote Control was also able to deliver immediate OPEX efficiencies. Powered by AI, it established the optimum schedule for energy sources on site by dynamically adjusted changes in load, weather, environment and equipment efficiencies at every site.
After implementing our solution across key operations, our customer saw a number of immediate improvements:
- Instant identification and repair of anomalies, saving up to $4,000 per month on some of their sites
- Over 80% reduction of diesel dependency on a large proportion of off-grid sites through full use of previously wasted solar energy
- 8% – 15% reduction in energy costs through better use of installed assets, including dynamic optimum control schedules
As well as the solid benefits, our customers gained better tools to monitor and manage network efficiency and resilience, which empowered them to deliver better margins from their tower operations.
- The team was able to quickly and proactively identify incidents that require maintenance
- Optimise maintenance visits with better informed reports on the operational upgrades needed
- The ability to identify fast improvements at scale whilst still recognising the changing environment for each site