As the world is progressing towards an age of development in the Internet of Things (IoT) and other aspects related to it, the concept of the digital consumer is on the rise. Consumers of today want to experience the feasibility that is promised through this method. From experiencing customer support resources that fulfill their needs to having a seamless experience across platforms, consumers really want to experience the full taste of this development in technology. The high expectations of the digital consumer have meant that Telcos now have to understand consumer preferences and give a solution that is aligned with the needs of today’s consumer. Not only is this expected of Telcos operating currently, but they can also increase their revenue streams.
One way to fulfill the needs of consumers in a flawless manner is through the use of the IoT and ecosystems. Today, I will talk in depth about how Telcos can use these concepts to their benefit. I recently had the opportunity to join a few other notable names such as Dez Blanchfield, Lillian Pierson and Ruven Cohen on a tour of the Ericsson Studio in Kista, Sweden. At the facility, we had a conversation with Elias Blomqvist, Strategic Product Manager at Ericsson. The conversation with one of the leading members of an organization playing the role of a protagonist in this wave towards the future influenced me into jotting down this article and using the insights garnered through the visit in crafting the content.
Today’s Clients Needs and Trends
The number one thing that Telcos need to understand and make room for is the needs and trends that are sought by clients today. Understanding these trends would lead to the development of a better Business Support System (BSS) that can eventually establish a Telco and establish their position as a prominent role player for the wave of technology that is set to dawn in the future.
Internet of Things
One of the most common trends present in the clients of today is the over-reliance of consumers on the growing concept of the IoT. The IoT can connect almost all devices, including houses and cars, to one server to make things even more comprehensive for the end user. The rising trend of the IoT gives a lot of opportunities for Telcos to establish themselves in this growing need for services. The implementation of the IoT has also meant that many new business systems are required by organizations. The traditional business system might just not suffice for this growing demand.
With 5G technologies expected to phase out during the coming five years, Telcos have added responsibilities on their shoulders to monetize the system in a way that is both consumer-friendly and generates revenue for them. This would mean that the traditional BSS would have to be altered in a way that it accommodates to the growing advancements in connectivity. Researchers have predicted that there will be a high stream of money, over $250 Billion on an annual basis. With so much value in the cards, Telcos wouldn’t want to miss out on the opportunities here.
An application ecosystem is basically a unique set of processes and capabilities that provides the full lifecycle management need for an application. This spans throughout the period of creation of the app until the end of its life. An app ecosystem will basically involve all the processes in the application development, uploading it on the store, and compliance with network policies. The app user experience can vary today based on the user’s subscription options and the network itself. Both these factors play an important role in the digital economy, as the app user system is dependent upon them. Telco operators are in a great position to change the experience of app developers for the better. By providing services that cater to this need, operators can help developers in providing users with a seamless experience across multiple platforms. Research from Ovum Data has indicated that analytics is another key aspect looking to be explored by app developers. Through the use of big data analytics, operators are looking make data accessible for third parties.
What Can Telcos Do to Benefit from These Opportunities?
Telcos can surely do a lot to benefit from the opportunities that are present in this regard. Some of the key points that they can implement and try out include:
- Telcos will have to focus on customer engagement, because it is really necessary for making a mark in this age of technological advancement.
- Telcos will have to show that they are adapting to the requests from the market. The market requests coming from customers and clients alike should be given value by Telcos, and these requests should also be worked upon to bring about a change.
- Working in an ecosystem with another partner is another necessary alteration that Telcos should adopt.
- Delivering a seamless experience over multiple channels is something we discussed before and is really important for winning over customers in this age as a seamless experience is what most customers crave.
- There is definitely a need for a new Business Support System (BSS). We will talk about this in more detail in the next section.
How Can Telcos Make These Changes?
With the changes already mentioned above, we can talk about what Telcos really have to do to meet these changes. There are certain key aspects that need to be taken into perspective. A business support system plays an important role in propelling a Telco forward in this age. The business support system needs to be significantly altered.
A business support system is basically a group of elements that are used by Telcos in gaining customer insight, generating new revenue methods and compiling real-time subscriptions. The top alteration that should be done in this regard is to direct the system towards managing customer experiences and feedback, rather than just subscription services. The transformation should really be directed to achieving a move from the demand-side of the vision to the supply-side of the vision. The new business support system should therefore be amended to meet the current trends in a more authentic manner. From point of sales to billing systems, a BSS manages everything, and hence innovation is deemed necessary here.
New Generation BSS
The new generation
BSS should be focused upon providing value in the front end and should be all about customer engagement. This can be achieved through creating more intimate relations and an end to end solution. At the back end, the system should be enabled by cloud and flexible enough to meet changing consumer demands. Ericsson Revenue Manager was first to demonstrate charging for 5G networks, at MWC 2016
In conclusion, it can be mentioned that nobody can deny the opportunities that are present for Telcos. However, to achieve these benefits in a thorough manner, Telcos will have to implement a few alterations that can help them fully benefit from the IoT.
The data for this article has been garnered from a conversation with Elias Blomqvist, Strategic Product Manager at Ericsson. I captured this content on behalf of DevMode Strategies during an invite-only tour of the Ericsson Studio in Kista. Rest assured, the text and opinions are my own. I would like to thank them for giving me the privilege to visit their studio in Kista.