Monetisation of telco data has been an area of heightened activity for the last couple of years, and an aspiration for far longer. Our recent research looked at the opportunity for telcos to create new revenue streams from their data and sale of associated products such as analytics and data platforms to their enterprise customers. Underpinning this research is a spreadsheet of 200+ use cases spread across twelve verticals, plus horizontal opportunities for all verticals. Each use case is considered a potential opportunity for telcos to provide some type of product. In our methodology, we ask two questions for each use case:
- How feasible is it for telcos to play successfully in the ecosystem (given the capabilities that they have and the market in which the product will have to compete)?
- How much financial upside could a telco derive from products created?
Monetising telecoms data is harder than it looks
Telcos’ interest levels have varied over that time due to the complexity of delivering and selling such a diverse range of products, as well as highly variable revenue opportunities depending on the vertical. Telcos’ appetite to pursue data monetisation has also been heavily impacted by the fortunes of other telco products, in particular IoT, owing to the link between many data/analytics products and IoT solutions.
Telcos with more mature data and analytics product sets have been committed to building up this area of their business for the last few years, and therefore have long-term relationships with a variety of verticals, work with specialist vendors/other parties to deliver products quickly, and consider the sometimes limited revenue streams to be worth the investment risk.
Barriers to market are often that the products created are not replicable across multiple use cases, the need to play within a variety of ecosystems, the competitive intensity within many markets and need for bespoke solutions to satisfy specific vertical or individual customer requirements.
Despite these challenges, the pandemic has created new market dynamics for telcos. First, new audiences within government and healthcare are being exposed to customer movement insight data for the first time. Also, the potential for increased market growth in products such as telemedicine may have a positive effect on the growth of related data/analytics opportunities.