Facebook set up the Telecom Infra Project in 2016 to drive open source standards in core telecoms hardware and network operations. In this report we examine the implications of this project for telcos and other industry players, and recommend how they should respond.
In our first analysis on 4G take-up in Europe, we found common success factors relating to how operators had rolled out their networks. In our latest analysis, looking at 30 countries in the APAC region, we identify what market characteristics drive or inhibit 4G adoption, and which countries are likely to grow fast now and why.
MEC (Mobile / Multi-Access Edge Computing) puts compute resources at the edge of telco networks. These servers can be used for distributing internal network functions – typically linked with NFV deployments – or made available to third-party developers as part of an “edge cloud” service offering. What are the realistic use cases, and can telcos monetise them?
VoLTE solves the complex problem of providing voice services over a 4G mobile data network. Although it may allow 2G and 3G networks to be turned off, and their spectrum re-farmed to other networks, declining call revenues (and in some cases declining volumes) are dampening appetite to invest in VoLTE. However, with voice beyond telephony on the rise, for example through AI-powered voice assistants and video calling, can telcos use VoLTE as an opportunity to develop new IP-based voice and messaging communications offerings?
Network Slicing is a way to run multiple networks on one infrastructure. In theory, it could mean that telcos could run mobile broadband and IoT networks over the same physical network, and also offer greater agility within those networks. We explore the theory and its challenges, examine use cases, what would be needed to make it happen, and look at five business case scenarios.
5G deployments will need new allocations of radio spectrum, particularly to achieve promised speeds, and target new IoT use-cases. However, the official process for releasing new frequencies is slow and cumbersome. Some countries may short-circuit the process. At the same time, the rationale for new sharing mechanisms, that allow industrial and vertical players to acquire spectrum for their own networks, outside of MNO control, is growing. What should telcos do?