Mobile World Congress, Mobility and the Enterprise
Voice and VPN services are not legacy – they drive considerable revenue and need to be protected in an increasingly mobile world
Once again, Mobile World Congress has rolled along and it’s been the usual round of meetings and events with customers, prospects and partners. MWC has evolved considerably in the past few years – it’s always been claimed that it represents a meeting place for the entire mobile ecosystem but this has definitely been substantiated in recent years.
In fact, this comprehensive representation means that it’s actually harder and harder to find what you want. The event has grown so much and with so many different interests represented, you really have to focus. He who shouts loudest captures the attention and the consumer side of the industry generally wins on that front. Everyone was aware of the different keynotes and the sharpening debate on data consumption, who is driving this and therefore who will pay. Wearable devices, new lower-cost smartphones aimed at emerging economies and the continuing emergence of M2M markets rightly attracted headlines.
But of course, our focus remains on the enterprise and it’s worth noting a few points that are beginning to solidify into clear trends. First, many tier one mobile operators offer VPN and related services to enterprise customers. These are largely based on IN / CAMEL and have been very successful in recent years. The problem is that many such systems have reached the end of their lives and need to be replaced.
We’ve encountered significant interest in how we can help MNOs accomplish this but it clearly shows how important services that are often labelled as legacy actually are. They are not legacy at all – far from it, They drive considerable revenue and even while confronted with challenges in moving to LTE, operators have to ensure continuity of service for their customers and that they retain and protect these valuable sources of revenue. A key theme for us will be how we help operators preserve these revenue streams while moving to future-proof platforms that can support their customers across the diverse range of network technologies required.
And this brings us to the wider theme of enterprise mobility. There has been a plethora of announcements regarding various forms of enterprise applications that can be delivered across multiple platforms, including mobile devices and smart solutions. However, there has also been recognition that voice remains critical to enterprise communications and interaction – which means that enterprise and SME users need to be able to leverage solutions that deliver advanced voice services across any platform or device.
Set against the new mobile environment, it’s easy to forget how important voice is. But the fact is that it remains a fundamental service and enterprises depend on reliable, secure voice communications that can be enriched through integration of call routing, PBX, conferencing, IVR and other functions. Enterprises cannot do without these and, in today’s mobile world, it’s easy to overlook their importance. We do not – we understand how mobility adds value to a range of applications but we never forget the importance of voice as a means of enabling enterprise interaction and collaboration.
What’s more, in an increasingly competitive world, it’s clear that MNOs need to be smarter about how they market their services. On the one hand, this means they need solutions that can enhance customer experience and leverage intelligence derived from their networks. On the other, it means that they need to get back to basics and identify market opportunities in which they can offer real differentiation and value. In our opinion, this must include a solid analysis of enterprise opportunities and market segments.
We’ve seen a number of operators choose different segments of the enterprise as a focus for their orientation – MNCs, SMEs, SoHos – and we’ve helped them deliver services that ensure they address their chosen markets effectively. We expect this to continue. Amidst all the noise of MWC, this kind of back-to-basics approach makes absolute sense, particularly as competition continues to increase, making it harder and harder to stand out.
We can help. We understand what it takes to succeed with enterprise, SME and SoHo offers and can help you deliver the kind of services that such customers need. If you want to find out how to enrich voice services and add value to enterprise and SME customers, why not get in touch?