In 2019, telecommunication companies are under increased pressure to invest in various technology while at the same time needing to focus on coming up with new business models for monetizing 5G as well as other potential opportunities.
After 5G becomes available, there will be significant opportunities to generate revenue in the fixed broadband and business-to-business sectors – including the Internet of Things (IoT), smart cities, and the connected home.
The biggest challenge will be realigning business models and revenue to support a broad range of services with needing to streamline processes or lose focus to deal with heavier workloads.
2019 Trends in Telecommunications
Let’s look at the top Telco trends for 2019 that are positioned to have a significant impact on the sector:
1. Increased cloud adoption
Telecommunication companies are taking advantage of the scale and agility that the cloud offers in order to virtualize networks, capitalize on IoT opportunities, and introduce innovation quickly. This includes making investments in cloud platforms to offer new digital services – which include SaaS applications, OTT content, and unified cloud-based communication services.
Moving forward, the cloud can be expected to become more embedded in various business processes as telecommunication companies look to mine big data to capitalize on increased revenue opportunities to manage and automate omnichannel interactions with customers.
2. 5G becoming a reality
Healthcare, transport, manufacturers, energy, and agriculture all have positioned themselves to capitalize on the potential that is offered by 5G and IoT technologies as they continue to become more mainstream. Introducing 5G will see partnerships between providers and telecommunication companies to capitalize on new opportunities in the market – analytics, data collection, Blockchain, fleet management, predictive maintenance, and smart city technologies with primary providers of OTT.
Many new opportunities will be created by 5G – from remote health and innovative video services to machine-to-machine services and autonomous vehicles. Expanded 5G capabilities will also require Telco’s to invest in technology to get go-to-market models developed to capture 5G and IoT business potential.
3. Create Ecosystem Value
To capitalize fully on all of the opportunities that IoT offers, telecommunication companies will need to go beyond just making their APIs available to IoT platforms. They will also have to seamless coordinate their ecosystems that is made up of independent partners to create value with them. Along with sophisticated integration capabilities and securing data exchange, operators will need to have the right decision and management systems in place to support different revenue sharing available models.
Telecommunications will also need to to have the capability for handling complex and extended customer value chains along with enabling virtual monetization schemes to support automated service delivery.
4. Managing Margins
These days, there are other important factors besides revenue growth. This explains why more business plans focus on individual margin per user (IMPU) rather than average revenue per user (ARPU).
The trend is positioned to be ongoing as telecom operators initial their digital service portfolios that need to have direct cost sand performance closely monitored to maintain profitability. To keep a close watch on margins, telecommunication companies will be leveraging data that they already have on an increasing basis – using analytics and machine learning to gain insight into assets, products, and customer profitability.
5. Privacy and digital identity will be moving to the forefront
In 2019, privacy and identity theft will continue to be crucial issues for providers. During a time when data security is directly linked with customer satisfaction, telcos’ ability to provide increased visibility and control of personal data to provide personalized services and marketing will be winning strategies.
eSIM technologies are positioned to bring IoT and mobile connectivity to a whole new level. That is why it is critical for telco operators to have a thorough understanding of what their capabilities are when it comes to digital customer management and explains why the Blockchain is moving into the forefront.
6. Unlocking the Blockchain’s potential
The Blockchain will be impacting all core management systems and services to provide increased opportunities through new value proposition to increase efficiency and grow revenue. It is essential for Telco operators to capitalize on the opportunities to implement Blockchain for data exchange and value to reduce fraud and introduce new kinds of identity-as-a-service form of eSIM services to generate increased revenue.
The provisioning of eSIM along with Blockchain is going to be key in allowing increased revenue streams, greater service efficiencies, and outstanding customer experiences. Allowing interoperability between internal and external systems, and also increasing transparency and operational effectiveness at the same time.
7. Increased industry convergence preparations
Today’s telecommunication companies are the leaders of Fintech, location-based data services, fast-paced innovations, mobile payments, and more. As money goes increasingly mobile, you will continue to see more telecommunications companies become involved in the financial services sector as well as initiating new alliances to allow individuals and enterprises to use real-time payments.
The situation is similar with health, media, and smart automation services, as telcos continue to leverage their diverse portfolios of assets – which range from connectivity and secure IT infrastructure to online and retail along with impressive CRM platforms, billing and data analytics for capitalizing on new markets.
8. CX engagement – the new digital rules
With consumer agendas focused on convenience and speed, telecom providers need to be prepared for digital-first customer service and engagement. In 2019, self-service will surpass human support with more and more customers caring for business on their own. The purchase process will have more live chat and co-browsing available to support the customer.
Providers will need to be able to combine their automated and assisted services in a seamless manner to ensure information is not lost that is related to automated interaction, in cases where human agents need to help.
9. Field service is being revolutionized
With the provisioning of services being developed for smart home services, there will need to be new approaches to deliver flexible and fast on-site customer support. Teleco operators will capitalize on the gig economy and crowd services will be used to create a far-ranging service ecosystem that can respond faster – and at a lower cost- to customer service needs.
10. Use AI in new and more creative ways
Until now, much of the buzz about AI has been on employing chat boxes and virtual assistants in customer service environments. Machine learning will be increasingly used by telcos to allow for intelligent search recommendations and solutions, to optimize field service resources, automate ticket categorization, intelligent call routing, and optimize field service resources. Robotic process automation also will be deployed to streamline highly repetitive service workflows and processes and to streamline complicated case management processes.
We are now within a new ‘Intelligent Connectivity era that will allow for the convergence of IoT, high-speed 6G networks and AI to unleash highly contextualized and personalized experiences that will define the future of the industry for many years into the future.