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Friday, 31 October 2014

It's a long way to the IPX Summit by Neil Johnson, Segment Manager, TeliaSonera International Carrier

Total Telecom's IPX Summit in September was lucky enough to have Neil Johnson, Segment Manager, TeliaSonera International Carrier provide his insights into IPX and effective 4G Roaming.

In light of the IPX Summit, Neil had this to say:

1. We’ve made it to base camp
Such gatherings celebrate ground covered and share direction. To continue the mountaineering metaphor, it was more of a successful IPX base camp. As an industry, we need to recognize that we are still at the early stages of what will be, for most operators, a challenging expedition.

2. Retail-driven, wholesale-enabled journey
‘Quality must move forward because people won’t go back’. That was how we opened the first IPX summit (IPX base camp 1) a year ago, when we launched whatisIPX.com. It still holds true. End users take everything we give them for granted and want more. Roaming is a prime example. As people get used to 4G in their home network, they expect it when they travel. And we need to deliver it. To keep moving quality forward. Otherwise we risk alienating and ultimately losing our end users.

3. The IPX Map
OK, not a map but the graphic that launched a thousand copies. The GSMA’s Dan Warren, Senior Director of Technology stood up and said “I did that”. In IPX, Dan’s the man, up there with Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay.

4. Expedition teams plan for the worst.
Buyers procure IPX-based services, not the IPX itself – that’s clear now. IPX is merely the underlying network infrastructure. IPX-enabled services – like diameter signaling or VoIPX – get bought and used. But the service and experience is merely as good as the IPX infrastructure. With no IPX certification, there remains plenty of variation in reach, but perhaps less in design. Disappointingly, one established carrier insists on branding its Internet-based services as IPX. Their marketing spend, rather than industry consensus, buys their place on the IPX journey.

5. Deciding which mountain to climb?
There remains a widespread perception that roaming is prohibitively expensive, and this is today suppressing demand. This will change – driven as much by operator group initiatives as well as, at least within the EU, regulation. Demand will grow quickly, particularly with the coming contextual services.

To see the rest of Neil's blog post click here.

Source: Johnson, N. 2014. It's a long way to the IPX Summit. Retrieved October, 2014, from http://www.whatisipx.com/its-a-long-way-up-to-the-ipx-summit/

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Wholesaler's mid-life crisis - Isabelle Paradis, President, HOT TELECOM


A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of moderating a roundtable on ‘The Future of International Wholesale’ at the Carriers World conference in London. This subject is obviously on many wholesalers’ minds at the moment, as there were not nearly enough chairs around the table to accommodate all the people who wanted to participate in this discussion.

In my opinion, a growing number of wholesalers are going through what we could call a ‘mid-life crisis’ and are reviewing their future as pure wholesalers and the legitimacy of focusing solely on voice services in the evolving International telecom ecosystem. The main triggers of this thought process being the power shift created by global mobile groups entering the wholesale market and serving their own community, coupled with the move to everything IP, data, wireless and free!

From the discussions that took place around the table, two things are clear in the minds of wholesalers: There will always be a role to play for wholesalers who play their cards right and in the long run, data and IP is the way to go.

There will always be a place for pure wholesalers, as long as they can remain relevant to service providers by enabling innovation, by providing high quality, secure global reach and by working closely with their customers to help them monetize data and new applications.

However, voice wholesalers will not be as lucky in the long run, as everything is evolving to IP, and eventually will become indistinguishable from data. At present, it is clear that voice calls are being transported as data across many wholesale networks, but they are still understood to be voice calls and charged as such. The migration of mobile networks to VoLTE completes this move right from the handset, and some of the complexities (and opportunities) of VoLTE will finally start to undermine this service understanding. When a voice call moves mid-stream to a video connection, how should that be charged?

Ultimately, voice will become as sub-set of IP services, perhaps not even understood by the networks in the middle as even forming part of a voice call and from there, the whole structure of the wholesale service offering will be transformed. With the advent of IPX and multiple services on a single pipe, mobile operators will expect their carriers to support all their services going forward, in addition to offering value added services such as number portability, fraud management and real time intelligence to name only a few.

The ones that will be able to meet these challenges and re-invent themselves into the new breed of super wholesalers will win big, while the others will probably survive for a while, but will eventually disappear.

So the $1,000,000 question is: What will the new world order look like?

In my opinion, consolidation is around the corner and the wholesale world as we know it today will not exist in 10 years’ time. The new world order will comprise of large mobile groups supporting their op-cos’ needs through their own wholesale arm, supplemented by a handful of global wholesalers able to provide extensive, scalable reach and leading edge services. In addition, we will probably find a number of niche wholesalers focused in meeting the needs of specific groups of customers (application providers, content providers and media companies for example), or offering deep in-region capillarity, or perhaps supporting specialized services for other wholesalers.


So let’s get ready to enjoy the ride, as it will be an exciting on!

Monday, 27 October 2014

The 16 companies leading the IoT revolution




The shortlist for the first ever Internet of Things Awards has been released and we've compiled an eBook of the 16 companies leading the IoT revolution. Want to know their secrets and how they've utilised the Internet of Things in their businesses?

If so, you’re in luck! View the eBook now

The Internet of Things Awards are held in conjunction with the Total Telecom Festival and World Communication Awards. For more information, then visit our Festival website. 

Download the eBook now

To find out who wins then you need to attend the Total Telecom Festival, held 2-3 December in London. Find out how you can attend here.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

125 millions why you should be interested in Indonesia

With an estimated 125 million internet users by 2015, its not surprising that the FT was reporting that Jakarta is ripe for a boom in tech start-ups. And that was before Softbank announced that together with Sequoia Capital they would be taking a $100m bet on  Indonesian online marketplace Tokopedia.

In the country that is home to the world’s heaviest users of Twitter, Smartphone ownership is booming, but it's not all rosy with Jakarta having infamously bad traffic, slow internet speeds, under-developed electronic payment systems amongst its myriad of problems.

Without doubt Indonesia is a land of opportunity for the telecom industry, so where do you fit in?

At this years Total Telecom Festival we bring together the two of the biggest names in Indonesia telecoms, with Alex J. Sinaga, Chief Executive Officer, Telkomsel speaking about redefining the telco-OTT relationship, transformation from telco to digital company, whilst later in the day Muhammad Awaluddin, Chief of Marketing for Enterprise Business at Telkom Indonesia will speak about building new business and recognising new role of the telco in developing society and community.

Why not come along, it's a great chance to meet the teams from Telekom Indonesia and Telkomsel and discover what the opportunity is for you.