What should telcos do to bridge the gaps between current hype, actual performance, and future promises on 5G? We argue that a data-driven and forensic approach to roll-out and marketing will be the key, particularly in the uncertain economic environment driven by the COVID-19 pandemic, and review the timelines for future applications.
New NFV/SDN deployments in North America are increasingly driven by 5G, with a striking role for open source and telco self-builds. Globally, our tracker includes details of nearly 500 NFV/SDN deployments between 2011 and May 2019.
After considerable hype and uncertainty, the near term developments for 5G are now much more apparent, including which nations will go first, chip and handset availability, and the use of different spectrum bands.
Some telcos are hoping that mobile data growth will resurge and transform their fortunes, though STL Partners has previously argued that data growth will not be enough. In this report we re-examine this argument looking at global trends and present the insights and lessons from six operator case-studies including DNA Finland, T-Mobile US and Reliance Jio.
The quality of experience delivered by operators’ mobile data networks is a key indicator of their current performance, and a foundation of their future prospects in digital. Our MobiNEX ranking, updated this week for H1 2016, shows how 80 operators in 25 countries compare. How does your telco stack up?
We see early-warning signs of new changes afoot in the influential US mobile market in both growth and competitive market dynamics. Verizon Wireless was the biggest winner from the market’s recent growth. But now things are slowing and challenger T-Mobile is breaking into the premium segment. What are the lessons?
For the first time, STL Partners quantifies the customer ‘app experience’ on twenty-seven mobile networks in seven countries. MobiNEX – The Mobile Network Experience Index – benchmarks mobile operators’ network speed and reliability by measuring download speed; average latency; error rate and latency consistency. It’s based on billions of real customer data points provided by our partners Apteligent. Congratulations to the top three performers – Bouygues, Free and Orange (all in France).
The last few years have seen attempts by many leading telecoms operators to refresh their business model and generate new sources of growth and value. Now many digital initiatives are being scaled back. Telefonica and Telenor, two companies in the vanguard of the ‘drive to digital’ have both disbanded their digital organisations. In the first of two reports, STL Partners explores why efforts to yoke platform and product innovation businesses to a traditional infrastructure business have proved so difficult. The financial and operational constraints associated with traditional telecoms – particularly the need for long investment cycles in ‘one-function’ infrastructure – have made achieving the switch to ‘agile digital innovation’ all but impossible. But all that may be about to change and the future could be a little brighter.
Our latest analysis shows staggering differences in ‘app-lag’ (the time it takes for an app to get a response over the Internet) across France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK, and twenty mobile operators. This has significant consequences for customer data experiences, and potentially operator market performance too. Operators in France, particularly Bouygues and Free, are delivering a superior customer app experience while 3 in Italy and Movistar in Spain are European laggards. (October 2015, Foundation 2.0, Executive Briefing Service.)
T-Mobile USA’s ‘uncarrier’ strategy has delivered significant net additions, but is it a good strategy – and is the disruption promised by Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son already underway? We compare it to Free Mobile’s disruptive approach in France, and the results of its competitors’ responses.
How Sprint’s necessary shutdown of Nextel turned into a commercial disaster, losing valuable customers, reputation, and market share. Our analysis shows that amdist the drama of the Softbank deal and the complexity of a major network upgrade, SMB customer needs were neglected, and its competitors (VZW, AT&T and T-Mobile) stepped smartly in.
The Japanese and French markets have both been disrupted through the entry of low-cost competitors offering substantial price reductions. We think that Softbank’s acquisition of Sprint is a signal that the same is to soon come in the US given Softbank’s experience as a successful disruptor in Japan. (January 2013, Executive Briefing Service).
Digital Commerce Flywheel December 2012
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) such as Akamai’s are used to improve the quality and reduce costs of delivering digital content at volume. What role should telcos now play in CDNs? (September 2011, Executive Briefing Service, Future of the Networks Stream).
Should telcos compete with Akamai?