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CSPs: getting the basics right

Operators need to focus on reducing chrun

Making the customer experience fit for the digital age has become one of the main focuses for communications service providers (CSPs). Across the UK, and in fact around the world, CSPs are racing to differentiate themselves with new digital services and features for the people and businesses they serve.

Openness is the key to NFV

Red Hat claims NFV works best with open technologies

The agility of open source software enables CSPs to deploy applications in minutes or hours instead of weeks or months, avoiding costly long-term projects and physical infrastructure deployments across globally located datacentres. As the future of the mobile datacentre continues to evolve, CSPs can use open source technologies to build and scale a tailored datacentre designed for their specific requirements.

The age of mobile point-of-sale purchasing has arrived (but not without some drama)

Mobile point-of-sale payments set to rise

In a networked economy, everything is connected, tracked, personalised and direct. Over the past 12 months, we have most significantly seen an increase in the use of alternative payment methods having a big contribution to the networked economy we live in. Most notably we have seen a rise in mobile payments and there are now a number of key options available: Apple Pay, Google Wallet and CurrentC.

Opening up LTE for IoT

Operators need to make sure they're on top of IoT

Today, LTE is the fastest growing wireless standard in history with over 300 commercial networks already launched as of mid-2014 and LTE subscriptions predicted to reach 1.6 billion by 2018. With this huge worldwide investment and momentum building, cellular operators are looking at how they can leverage that investment into the rapidly growing IoT space.

Mobile money: no pain, no gain?

Mobile money is complicated

With the recently released Apple Pay, the media hype surrounding mobile payments and mobile wallets has reached “banked” countries. It may sound like a great new idea for some, but for the 200 million people already using similar services for some years (most of them in “unbanked” countries), it looks obvious.

Small cells: the Lesser Powered Femtocell

Small cells are the new femtocells

The term ‘femtocell’, yet another hyped technology, was penned several years ago to cast away our cellular coverage woes but at a price. Fortunately, nowadays, you no longer hear mobile operators telling consumers that they must dip into their pockets to resolve those coverage issues that were fundamentally their responsibility.

Unlocking the value of NFV

Virtualizing network functions can help operators be more agile

With NFV, operators have a chance to fight back by creating their own products and services that can be prioritised over OTT applications. Not only will this help generate new revenues, it will also increase brand loyalty as subscribers become accustomed to the greater quality of service they receive from native operator applications.

Mobile for everyone

The Mobile Microfranchising programme runs in Jakarta, Indonesia

Operators are under increasing pressure to bring coverage even to the remotest areas, and with mobile technologies penetrating almost every aspect of modern life, access to or the lack of a network connection can have profound social implications.

Small cells: the only way to 5G

Workable 5G needs small cells, the author argues

It’s been estimated that the volume of global monthly mobile data traffic will exceed 15 exabytes by 2018. LTE is already proving to be a major bandwidth hog. While 4G represents only a fraction of mobile connections today, it accounts for at least 30% of mobile data traffic, thanks to a surge in high-bandwidth content such as video calling and music streaming.

Carrier aggregation or carrier aggravation?

The concept of carrier aggregation is getting a lot attention

Carrier Aggregation – one of most popular features of LTE-Advanced – is currently in the innovator and early-adopter stages of the technology lifecycle. As such it is still relatively immature and complex to implement with the risk of disappointing early consumers.

The zen of the ‘N’ – why weightless finally makes sense

Weightless in space

The Weightless-W standard will be disbanded and the all new Weightless-N will be developed with the help of NWave, a recently signed-up member to join the group. NWave will help to draft the next generation of white space technology: v1.0, which is proposed to be published by the end of Q1 2015.

A fundamental transformation

A new world of networking.

In 2012, the telecommunications industry became awash with talk of a new and potentially disruptive technology that could herald in a new era of networking. In the months and years since, Software Defined Networking, or SDN, has grown to more than just a buzzword. Coupled with its complimentary, but not mutually-exclusive, counterpart Network Functions Virtualization; [...]

The evolution of mobile retail services in the UK: Phones 4U’s demise in context

A tough business

In September 2014 Phones 4u entered into administration after it became apparent that it would be unable to continue as a going concern following the loss of its distribution agreement with EE and Vodafone. Having seen consolidation of the UK mobile industry at network level with the merger of Orange and T-Mobile to form EE, we are now witnessing consolidation at retail level.

Digital innovation a “luxury”? For operators, it’s in the DNA

Innovation is in operators' DNA

During a speech this summer, Google executive Tim Carter declared that operators simply can’t afford to innovate, claiming that that the “luxury” of digital innovation is now the sole preserve of the rich (i.e. Google) and entrepreneurs with little to lose. But is this really true?

Using SDN to offset the data capacity crunch

diagram

In 2014, operators are feeling the pressure from several quarters. Revenues from mobile and fixed line services are continuing to decline; traditional applications such as SMS are suffering erosion from innovative IP-based rivals; and the traffic across the network footprint is growing exponentially, with customers calling for higher performance and interconnectedness of experience.

The case for Self-Organizing Networks

Complex

Mobile Operators are facing unprecedented data growth in their networks resulting in financial and technical challenges. These challenges require not only new tools and techniques but new thinking to resolve.

How Can Today’s Mobile Operators Evolve Into Digital Telcos of the Future?

Bringing your IT up to date

Payment models have changed dramatically, leading to reduced margins for mobile operators. Unless traditional telcos look to reap back these revenues from additional streams, the environment will become even more challenging.

Has the hype killed the White Space radio star?

Keeping the radio star alive

In this second feature, I want to take a closer look at why white space has seemingly stumbled, despite its surrounding hype. I have to confess that, in my experience, there’s always an associated amount of puffery within the telecommunications industry – an inflated balloon of hyperbole used to garner momentum for a new technology.

Will the Unified Patent Court for Europe help or harm the telecoms sector in the UK?

One court to rule them all

The Unified Patent Court (UPC) is the result of an agreement between 27 European countries to create a single patent for Europe (the ‘Unitary Patent’), with a single court (the UPC) to handle validity and enforcement matters.

Long term harmony

Is a true LTE 'world phone' even possible?

LTE is the fastest-growing wireless technology yet and it comes at a time when even the world’s poorest people have access to smartphones. However the global LTE picture remains highly fragmented, with no consensus on LTE bands, so is it desirable or even possible to make an LTE world phone?

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