Disruption is the new normal for telecommunications

Disruption is the new normal for telecommunications

Telcos are concerned about their position in the new marketplace, and unsure how to adopt disruptive technologies to improve their competitiveness.


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Connectivity, competition, and convergence are redefining every aspect of the telecom landscape from the way networks are designed, built and maintained, to the content flowing through, and the channels that enable users to access services.

Before long, everyone and everything will be connected, creating an explosion in network traffic, a rapid increase in the number of connected devices and telecom companies racing to upgrade their networks to 5G in an effort to provide the necessary speed and bandwidth.

Telecom companies may be accustomed to change – but the accelerated speed of disruption is something they haven’t experienced before, and many are struggling to figure out how to navigate the numerous disruptive technologies and the impact they will have on their organization.

While 58 percent of telecom leaders are optimistic about the opportunities disruptive technologies provide, they also have many concerns about the impact of these technologies on their business. Competitive pressures are driving these fears.  This includes competitors from within the industry as well as new competition from that disruptive technologies have brought into the sector from other industries.

Competitive pressures drive disruption chart

Four out of five respondents (79 percent) fear that that demand for OTT is outpacing the ability of telecom companies to adapt.

Companies from other sectors, including many technology companies are expanding their services in this space, in the process consuming a significant proportion of available network bandwidth. The insatiable demand for content by consumers is forcing operators to invest heavily in increasing network capacity and creating a vicious cycle, with much of this capacity being further exploited by OTT players – rather than the telcos themselves.

There fears are compounded by the fact that only about half of respondents say their organization has a clear strategy and mission for disruptive technology and a mere 23 percent feel their company is “very prepared” in terms of a strategic vision for disruptive technologies.

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