STL Insights

Snapshots from our analyst team's latest research

5G energy consumption: A rapidly changing business climate

5G is where operators will be devoting most resources over the next decade. The massive investment required for deploying 5G plus the energy challenges associated with running 5G will ensure that 5G dominates operators’ carbon footprint. Retrofitting or replacing legacy operations is harder to justify (both economically and environmentally) than adopting best practice with new 5G and 5G-ready networks. Although …

Satellite and telco industry convergence: evolution not revolution

STL Partners conducted research through conversations with key stakeholders in both the satellites and telecoms industries. We held interviews with satellite vendors (e.g. manufacturers of satellites and ground equipment), satellite service providers (SSPs), and traditional mobile network operators (MNOs) to get a balanced understanding of attitudes across the wider ecosystem. In this article, we detail our findings on the impact …

Hyperscalers telco edge partnerships: Operators strategies

Although many operators acknowledge the opportunities that edge computing brings to their existing and future network, operators move to the edge remains relatively cautious. The uncertain ROI, as well as the varying requirements for different edge nodes, has not allowed most operators to develop a clear strategy towards their edge computing as they keep waiting for stronger demands to take …

cloud native

Mapping the telco’s cloud native approach

Based on operator interviews and market understanding, STL Partners mapped telco approaches to cloud native across two dimensions with the aim of drawing insights and wider recommendations for all telco leaders considering their stance on cloud native. Dimension 1 (the horizontal axis) reflects differences in telcos’ operating model visions, ambitions and capabilities. Dimension 2 (the vertical axis) is a measure …

A new kind of telco? How Rakuten is pursuing economies of scope

New technologies, together with a supportive policy agenda and more flexible spectrum licenses, are lowering the barriers to entry in telecoms, while cutting the cost of connectivity. These trends could give rise to a new kind of telco, as exemplified by Rakuten Mobile in Japan and Reliance Jio in India. Although global internet platforms, such as Google and Amazon, are …

Telco investment priorities: Healthcare and Government in top spots

Telco investment priorities: Healthcare and Government in top spots

STL Partners survey on telcos’ investment priorities for 2021 reveals that, among Enterprise verticals, Healthcare and Government are the top-rated sectors seeing the biggest acceleration in investment priority.  Healthcare is the most accelerated opportunity. Healthcare’s top spot seems predictable given that the world is in the midst of a pandemic. However there are challenges to success in this vertical. Indeed, …

The adoption of eSIMs in IoT scenarios

For the next three years, the eSIM adoption will be shaped by the following factors. A decisive rise of the use of eSIMs in smartphones will balance the attention on eSIM between consumer segments and the enterprise IoT segment. In the enterprise IoT segment, cars will remain the key adopter of eSIMs. The key driver of eSIMs outside of connected …

5G-aliser March 2021

The 5G-aliser: One year on

Building on solid foundations After a hiatus as we kicked off the new year, we are back with the latest edition of the 5G-aliser. We first launched our tracker of the 20 key factors that could make or break 5G growth nearly a year ago, in March 2020. So how has the outlook for 5G evolved over the last year, …

Telecoms priorities: A snapshot from our State of the Industry survey

5G made a genuinely astonishing leap in terms of priorities over 8 months. Back in May 2020, net sentiment was negative such was the doubt raised by COVID over near term 5G plans in many markets. In Q1 2021 it’s “full speed ahead!” – apparently, although commentary in the survey suggested that the business case for 5G, and best way …

Edge computing use case: AR/VR gaming and simulation

Use case description Location based AR/VR game play is becoming increasingly popular (e.g. PokemonGO) This requires a lot of data processing for both location awareness and running the virtual reality game, especially for multiplayer gaming where the game needs to know where players are in real time Consumers expect consistent connectivity/ quality of content Likely at the network edge, to …

Skilling up telcos for A3: New roles and where they fit (Chart)

Our recent research explored the steps telcos are looking to take and should take in order to pursue data-driven strategies in automation, analytics and AI (A3).  Our surveys on industry priorities suggest that operators recognise this need, regardless of whether they are focused on their core connectivity business or seeking to build new value beyond connectivity. A corresponding organisational shift …

Different hyperscalers have different telco strategies: comparison between Azure, AWS and Google Cloud (Chart)

The above illustration shows somewhat the distinction between AWS’s and Google Cloud’s offer to telcos compared with Microsoft Azure’s. There are examples where telcos are relegated to a subordinate role in relation to Microsoft Azure, too: as a customer for NFaaS and as a mere platform and channel for Azure’s and its partners’ edge compute-enabled services. However, we do believe …

UK high level post-covid digital health forecast

The telco health opportunity: Now or never

We know from looking at examples like TELUS, Telstra, Orange, KPN, Telia, etc. that building a new business in the healthcare vertical is not a quick win for telcos. It requires significant time and effort to understand where, as a telco, you can bring the best value in your local healthcare market. You have to build these services and capabilities …

When it comes to selling the virtues of their services, mobile operators appear to be stuck in the 1970’s

In the middle of the 1970s’ oil crisis, many auto ads were promoting power and speed of their products, even for family saloons (warning: anyone looking to verify this assertion, will find the auto advertising industry objectifying women with jaw-dropping regularity). The car industry has evolved…a bit. Much advertising now promotes the virtues of fuel efficiency and low emissions (or …

Telco data monetisation: COVID-19 insight services

Telco data monetisation: COVID-19 insight services

A key area of interest for telecoms operators seeking to build new businesses from their core assets is data analytics, aggregating their rich customer insights to bring value to customers in advertising, government, and other industry verticals. Singtel’s DataSpark has had some success in telco data monetisation with propositions for customer groups such as: Land-use and transport planners to understand …

AI strategy: To centralise or not? (chart)

Though only a handful of telecoms operators, including Telefónica and Elisa, have an ambition to drive new revenue growth through development of their own IP in AI, all operators will need AI to permeate their internal processes to compete effectively in the long term – it is the next logical phase of cost efficiencies the industry has been pursuing over …

Want access to our research?

Our research focuses on how telcos and their partners can embrace industry disruption.

Learn more