stc Group Deploys AI-Powered Network Optimization with Nokia’s MantaRay SON

stc Group and Nokia launch AI-driven network system for enhanced connectivity, boosting efficiency and reducing manual intervention.

stc Group (stc) has deployed an AI-powered operations system on its network using Nokia’s MantaRay Self-Organizing Network (SON), an AI-powered operations system that automates network optimization.

The MantaRay SON solution was utilized for the first time on stc’s network infrastructure during Hajj season, enabling over one million pilgrims to stay seamlessly connected. It was Nokia’s first-ever successful deployment of the cognitive, AI-powered module on a live network. stc Group worked with Nokia to design the bespoke algorithm for Hajj, allowing for autonomous network optimization in 15-minute intervals.  

Nokia’s MantaRay SON is an industry-leading network optimization and automation platform that uses self-configuring AI-powered modules to boost network performance and efficiency. MantaRay SON offers modules that can be built and deployed for specific software applications to address unique operational challenges.

stc’s network showed significant enhancements as a result of the customized AI-powered MantaRay SON system. Over 10,000 actions were processed during the live network implementation, which indicated an increased utilization rate of approximately 30 percent on loaded cells and 10 percent average improvement on user throughput. Despite traffic increasing by 40 percent, stc’s network successfully maintained consistent connectivity. This successful operation reduced manual work, improved network quality, and paved the way for the future of AI automation in telecommunications infrastructure.

stc and Nokia are pioneering a new era where Artificial Intelligence revolutionizes the telecom industry. This technology not only minimizes human error and improves quality but also allows networks to operate autonomously and efficiently, while humans remain essential in guiding and maximizing the outcomes from machine learning.

Haithem Al Faraj, Chief Technology Officer, stc Group

Through our collaboration with stc Group, Nokia is transforming telecoms network infrastructure with the integration of Artificial Intelligence. Our MantaRay Cognitive SON solution, equipped with sophisticated AI algorithms, represents a quantum leap in network optimization – a global first in its deployment by stc Group. This AI-driven innovation has redefined standards for network performance, ensuring robust and consistent service for customers even during peak usage periods.

Mikko Lavanti, Head of MEA, Nokia

The development of an AI-powered network module expands stc’s suite of generative AI solutions. It offers a wide range of AI-driven capabilities that are driving digital transformation and sustainable growth, including through its energy efficiency programs, which resulted in a 13 percent reduction in energy consumption across stc’s 4G and 5G networks in 2023. By 2025, stc’s AI-powered products will cut across over 200 systems, saving the organization approximately SAR 2 million annually.

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