Glossary

B

BAA
Blanket authorisation agreement: agreement signed by interconnecting parties in order to guarantee they have the authority of the end user to request CPNI, and place service orders on the customer’s behalf.
Baby Bell
One of the original seven local exchange companies formed from the break-up of AT&T: Nynex, Bell Atlantic, Bellsouth, Southwestern Bell, Pacific Bell, US West and Ameritec. See also RBOC.
Backbone
A high-capacity data transmission line or series of major connections within a network that serve as a high bandwidth pathway feeding from lower capacity lines. Typically, a backbone would connect a wide area network (WAN) to local area networks. In some WANs, the transmission paths connecting local or regional networks for long-distance interconnection via network nodes (eg data switching exchanges) are also known as backbones or trunks.
Backhaul
Transmitting data – voice, video, TV, etc – via wireline, fibre, wireless or satellite circuits from its network point of entry to the exchange switch or via multiple network backbones for distribution and delivery to its destination. It requires understanding of changing network conditions and economics.
In satellite communication, backhaul refers to the delivery of data to a point from which it can be distributed over a network. Backhauling is also used for transmitting non-live audio and video to distribution points for broadcasting.
BAN
Billing account number: primary telephone number used for billing.
Bandwidth
The width of the range (or band) of frequencies required to transmit a signal over a given transmission medium – via wires, optical fibre or wireless. Measured in Hertz (Hz – the number of cycles of change per second) band width is the difference between the highest frequency and lowest frequency required to transmit the signal. In telecoms terminology, bandwidth is also used to describe data transfer rate, expressed as bits per second (bps), and to define the maximum data carrying capacity of a given connection.
Bandwidth shaping
See “traffic shaping”
Bandwidth trading
A process under which carriers with excess capacity sell unused bandwidth to smaller carriers and resellers in need of extra bandwidth capacity. As telecom markets are deregulated, carriers are looking to mitigate risk in planning their purchase and leasing of bandwidth capacity.
BER
Bit error rate – the ratio of error bits to the total number of bits transmitted.
Best effort
A class of service with no defined parameters for delivery of traffic.
BGP
Border gateway protocol: designed for swapping routing information between gateway hosts in a network of independent systems.
BHMC
Busy hour minutes of capacity: The maximum amount of switched access service and/or directory assistance service access minutes the customer expects to be handled in an end office switch during any hour between 8am and 11pm.
BICI
Broadband inter-carrier interface: A carrier-to-carrier PNNI (private network-to-network interface) that is required because carriers do not permit their switches to share routing information or network maps with competitors.
Bitstream
A continuous flow of binary digits (bits) via a communications medium such as fibre-optics or wireless connection.
BLEC
Broadband/building local exchange carrier
Blockage
The number of calls out of 100 attempts that meet delays in finding access.
BPON
Broadband passive optical network: based on APON, this ITU standard adds support for WDM, dynamic and higher upstream bandwidth allocation.
BRAN
Broadband radio access network
BRAS
Broadband remote access server
BRI
Basic rate interface
Broadband
A wide frequency band for the transmission of data that can be multiplexed and sent on many different frequencies or channels within the band concurrently, allowing more information to be transmitted in a given amount of time. This term is often used to describe any circuit that is significantly faster than dial-up, with broadband services offering “always-on” connections, fixed price/unlimited access to the internet (although some broadband tariffs are based on data volume) and faster, more reliable data transmission rates. As deployment of packet-based, next-generation networks (NGNs) gathers pace and broadband penetration increases, we enter an era of converged communications services delivering voice, video and data to subscribers on demand – and to any type of device. television.
Broadband video
Streaming video fed from a website. Also known as internet video or broadband television.
BSA
Basic serving arrangement: an open network architecture term that defines the relationship between an enhanced service provider and the service provider and encompasses the basic interconnection access arrangement to the PSTN.
BSE
Basic service element: in open network architecture, BSEs are functions of a carrier’s switched network provided to their competitors on like terms.
BSS
Base station subsystem
BTS
Base transceiver system
BTU
British Thermal Unit: The heat value dissipated from technical equipment or the power of a heating or cooling system per hour (1W=3,41 BTU/h).
Bundle
1) A group of fibres or wires housed within a single cable sheath.
2) Where carriers entice subscribers to buy more than one telecoms service – such as long-distance, local and internet service.
Bundled
When applied to tariffing, the practice of charging a flat rate per period of service up to a certain limit of call time (for voice calls) or data transmitted (for data services like GPRS).
Bundled services
The provision of several services combined under a single tariff or charge.
Busy hour
The hour at which the telecoms network carries the most traffic (see also traffic shaping).