As we get into the swing of 2016, we felt it was important to address the telecom landscape and discuss the changes we foresee.
Telcos now play in an ultra-competitive arena – increasing customer demands and new vendors mean they have to shift gears quickly to offer increased efficiency, enhanced products and better serve their customers.
Here are some trends to look for:
Everyone wants broadband. And more of it
Bandwidth has become like sugar: the more people get it, the more of it they want. And the demand will only continue to grow. With everything moving to the cloud, the coming boon of the Internet of Things, increasing mobile users, and increasing gaming and video content, customers will require loads and loads (and loads) of bandwidth. Somehow, telcos need to be able to provide it. And they will via Fiber and Ethernet-based services.
Video, video, video
Who wants to read when there’s streaming video? Answer: just about everyone. That’s why consumption of video will continue to explode as people watch wherever they go, on smart phones, tablets and other devices.
Accordingly, cable operators and content providers will bring to market their own video solutions. They’ll understand that it’s smart to shift customers to a lower-cost service than to have them go elsewhere for video.
Cities are questioning network investments
Across the country, cities large and small have been luring businesses (and jobs) by dangling the promise of broadband as part of the infrastructure. In 2016, some cities will analyze if they should invest in their own fiber networks.
Do they leverage existing infrastructure or build something better from scratch? They’ll look at an array of factors like bandwidth needs, technology changes, maintenance costs and their ability to handle customer support.
They’ll find that managing a network is a lot different than running a city, and in most cases improving existing infrastructures makes more sense in the long run. Small upgrades will provide equal benefits for less cost.
Small cells get more notice
With the combination of mobile, social and video, telecoms will have no choice but to vastly update their networks to meet demand. This year they will add more small cells to boost capacity, coverage, and user experience.
Plus, to provide a foundation for their small cell deployments, wireless carriers will choose to go with a combination of traditional lit services or dark fiber. These carriers will also likely offer more customized small cell service options, with them choosing to outsource aspects like support, permits, ongoing operations and maintenance.
Enterprises like Voice more, IP less
For some time we’ve seen an exponential adoption of IP-based voice and data communications, a trend that will continue in 2016. Companies of all sizes have recognized the need to replace essentially ancient phone systems with modern technology.
They’re choosing either hosted PBX systems or Session Initiated Protocol (SIP). Both solutions may include automatic call distribution, video integration and reporting, making it an easy decision to go with IP-based solutions over a traditional system.
Like any other year, 2016 will see technology advances blend with business and consumer demands to shift the market. Telecoms that pay attention, and adjust accordingly, will be prepared to succeed in 2017 and beyond.