This solution relies on the RAN providing relevant information that may be used by a UE to decide:
1. If and when to connect/disconnect to/from an available WLAN
2. Steer one or more data flows from/to 3GPP RAN to/from WLAN
The UE is assumed to receive network selection and traffic steering rules and/or polices either via ANDSF or user preferences or operator provisioning. The solution can be applied in both RCC_IDLE and RRC_CONNECTED modes. More specifically, the figure below, taken from doc R2-132055, illustrates the procedure when UE is idle mode.
- When the UE establishes RRC connection with 3GPP RAN, it transfers interworking capability info to the network
- If the UE has indicated support for WLAN interworking and 3GPP RAN also wants to interwork with WLAN, the latter may provide assistance info to UE via dedicated signalling at the time of RRC connection release.
- In addition, RAN may broadcast System Information which includes assistance info. If UE has valid assistance information provided through dedicated signalling previously, it ignores the related broadcast information.
- UE selects the access network based on information provided by RAN, information obtained from WLAN and rules/policies/preferences.
- As in the previous case, the UE transfers its interworking capability information to RAN at the time of RRC Connection establishment.
- While the UE is connected to RAN, it receives assistance information from RAN through dedicated signalling, if the UE supports WLAN interworking and RAN wants to interwork with WLAN.
- UE selects the access network based on the assistance info provided by RAN, acquired information from WLAN and rules.
In both cases, the assistance information may include the following:
- 3GPP Network load
- Resources allocation for UE
- WLAN thresholds (e.g. RSSI)
- RAN thresholds (e.g. RSRP)