A woman is standing at a train station holding a smartphone in her hand.

The Young Person's Suffering When the Network Goes Down

Netmotion is a solution that enables continuous and secure mobile network access

April 27 2020Jutta Rahenbrock

The young person's suffering when the network goes down

Recently on the train. Full ICE car, slow Wi-Fi. You know how it is. Next to me a young man – presumably a student – is absorbed in wildly moving colorful monsters back and forth on his mobile phone. There are explosions every tenth of a second. Suddenly, my seat neighbor jumps up and screams: “Argh! Why does the network have to crash now of all times?" 

Just about to hit the record – and the connection is lost 

One hand holds a smartphone, next to it honeycomb graphic representations.

It would seem that he doesn't travel on the Cologne to Frankfurt route very often. The experienced passenger is familiar with the points where the Wi-Fi goes down on the ICE. Apparently, my fellow traveler was about to break a record. Or vanquish a monster. Definitely something important. I can understand (after all, I have children of the same age) that in the age of digitalization, experiences such as these are equivalent to personal tragedies. They used to do this kind of thing on the soccer field.

Mobile society, flexible working?

Mobile-flexible working – it kind of works. We've all experienced network disconnections. Incidentally, this is usually at the very moment we want to capture a flash of inspiration on virtual paper or urgently pass on important information to a colleague. These things annoy us. Sort of like for my student. In other work scenarios, it can make the difference between life and death. Consider paramedics or firefighters who are being navigated to a current emergency at a railway station or on a company's premises. Network failure, service breakdown. Log in again, enter address again. This can cost precious seconds that may actually be relevant. Real time has a real meaning here.

Non-uniform network structures

The problem is that the network coverage that our terminals access is by no means uniform in the public domain. And not only in terms of the number of “bars" we have at our disposal, but above all in terms of technology. On the regional express – to take another example from my railway experiences – which travels overland, my mobile phone switches casually and sometimes arbitrarily and irreproducibly between 4G, HSDPA, Edge, and "No service". Network roulette in the Rhineland. And colleagues in other German states who enjoy the convenience of Wi-Fi in their regional express trains report the same thing – only with one more component. 

Mind-expanding experiences of network disruption are, by the way, not limited to travel in public spaces. Even companies that control AGVs using Wi-Fi also have the dubious pleasure of robots that go on strike or take a coffee break because the transfer between extensive WiFi networks does not always work perfectly. This can be solved with private 4G or 5G networks. But until we, as private consumers, have access to the 99 percent coverage of 5G in the public domain, we need other solutions.

Consistent network quality as the basis for real time

A senior swims in a lake and holds a smartphone in his hand.

Consistent (mobile) network quality like at a stationary workplace – wouldn’t that be amazing. And it would not only make the dream of flexible working a reality, but would also provide relief in many other digital applications. Or have you resigned yourself to a restricted situation?

Netmotion really is a solution that enables continuous and secure mobile network access. A simple client is installed on the end devices for this purpose. After installation and configuration, an encrypted VPN tunnel is established to the central VPN gateway in a (cloud) data center. If the user now drives into a dead zone, has a roaming problem, or the end device simply decides to take a break, Netmotion intervenes: it detects the location and reason for this and puts the applications that are "located" in the VPN tunnel into a "pause mode". Client and server applications are not aborted, only paused. When the network is back up, the data connections continue seamlessly. The user gets an uninterrupted experience.

In addition to seamless roaming, mobile performance management brings a few more features to enhance the mobile user experience, such as acceleration of data traffic and data compression as well as application and tunnel stability.  

However... if the user stays where there is no network connection, well – we can't yet perform miracles.

You can also find an interesting article on this topic here.

About the author

Jutta Rahenbrock

Manager Product Marketing, T-Systems International

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