How can multiple access technologies (4G, 5G, Wi-Fi, fixed line) be used together to deliver a resilient, optimised and consistent experience of network quality and coverage? An introduction to the landscape, opportunities and challenges in providing a single user experience across multiple networks.
Driven in part by the COVID-19 pandemic, demand for both core broadband and value-added services is growing. This presents new challenges and opportunities for operators seeking growth “in the home”. However, traditional growth strategies, such as the triple play proposition, have reached maturity – telcos must therefore find new ways to drive sustained growth and stay relevant in the space.
While 5G continues to occupy 90% of the industry’s focus, Wi-Fi is quietly entrenching its role for consumers, especially in the home. It is central to media consumption and domestic IoT. In its 20th anniversary year, how will the new WiFi6 – along with whole-home meshes – make it even harder to displace? And how should telcos and others play?
Recently, Orange passed 22 million homes, Telefónica 20 million, and AT&T is now reaching five million more every year. The Chinese have over 300 million FTTH connections. What does FTTH do for ARPU, churn, OPEX and 5G that makes it so compelling?
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?
The evolution of eSIMs, supporting remote provisioning of mobile operators’ profiles, could allow new IoT devices and business-models to thrive. However, the promise is countered by fears that eSIM could enable Internet companies and device manufacturers to become connectivity gatekeepers. We analyse the threats, opportunities and practicalities, and give our view of the likely outcomes.
There’s a lot at stake in 5G, and many players are understandably pushing their own views and strategies hard. Our latest analysis summarises the story so far, the barriers, players and timelines, and how we see it playing out.
5G was one of the dominant topics at MWC 2016, and a key theme was the push by many infrastructure vendors and chipset manufacturers to bring forward the timeline for development of an early version of 5G. Some leading operators are also stepping up to support this vision. Fortunately, the “early 5G” group’s wish-list is relatively simple: it’s about capacity, cost, and carbon dioxide.
Over 5 years, BT Group’s share price has more than tripled, outperforming Apple’s and Google’s, while its revenues have shrunk. Why, and what can other telcos learn from its success?
Cable operators are on the verge of a massive and remarkably easy capacity upgrade. Where it has begun, fixed incumbents are already being forced to deploy fibre. Gigabit WiFi is coming too, so mobile operators are very much concerned.
AT&T’s residential fixed operation is underperforming as faster cable connections take over. It would probably like to trim its footprint or get out, and invest in fibre and its content business model. Is that really an option, and what are the lessons for other telcos?
Verizon and Comcast have invested in high bandwidth fibre and cable networks, whereas AT&T has until recently focused on U-Verse, an IPTV play. Which strategy is winning out and why? The answer is surprising and may transform the US and other markets, and there are parallels with Apple and Samsung’s ‘deep value’ strategies of investing in assets that are hard to replicate.
LTE is gaining traction in Asia Pacific and the US, despite challenges with spectrum, voice, and handsets. In South Korea, for example, penetration is expected to exceed 50% within 18 months. Our report on the lessons learned at the 2012 NGMN conference. (July 2012, Executive Briefing Service, Future of the Network Stream)
LTE in Korea
The telecoms industry often puts so-called OTT (over-the-top) players like Google and Facebook at the forefront of its concerns, as they pose new competition for services and applications. But what about encroachment of companies “underneath” the telcos, displacing them from their core asset, the network? Telco 2.0 examines the strategic threats and opportunities from wholesale providers, outsourcers and government-run broadband networks. (January 2012, Executive Briefing Service, Future of the Networks Stream).
UTF Image Jan 2012
Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) are becoming familiar in the fixed broadband world as a means to improve the experience and reduce the costs of delivering bulky data like online video to end-users. Is there now a compelling need for their mobile equivalents, and if so, should operators partner with existing players or build / buy their own? (August 2011, Executive Briefing Service, Future of the Networks Stream).
Telco 2.0 Six Key Opportunity Types Chart July 2011
‘Net Neutrality’ has gathered increasing momentum as a market issue, with AT&T, Verizon, major European telcos and Google and others all making their points in advance of the Ofcom, EC, and FCC consultation processes. This is Telco 2.0’s input, analysis and recommendations. (Sept 2010, Foundation 2.0, Executive Briefing Service, Future of the Networks Stream).