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Increasing reliance on mobile technology in the pandemic

By Carmel Burgess posted Wed January 06, 2021 11:56 AM


CSPs pivoting to AI-powered solutions

We are all increasingly dependent on mobile technology, and now even more so as we step into 2021, during the pandemic. The lines between the home and office environment have become blurred. There is massive demand being placed on mobile technology and operator networks. Only lately I had to equip my son with a mobile phone so that he could attend his music class that has now gone online. Given the timing of the class, he has to connect while in transit from school to home, so a stable, secure and reliable mobile connection is essential. This is just one aspect of the new reliance that we have on  mobile networks and the level of service that mobile users expect from their providers.

Even before the pandemic, mobile networks were being put under ever-increasing pressure as mobile traffic volumes continue to grow at unprecedented rates. Looking forward past the pandemic, it’s easy to see that this trend will continue with an increase in demand for more bandwidth intensive applications such as 3-D video, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). And this is just in the consumer space. In the enterprise space we are expecting significant increases in Internet of Things (IoT) devices, smart campuses and smart manufacturing – with many other services to follow. As a result, communications service providers (CSPs) are under enormous pressure to meet these challenges and to reduce costs at the same time. On top of all of this, CSPs must be able to differentiate themselves, they must be able to rapidly and cost effectively rollout new services, not only to meet, but to stay ahead of market demand.

To survive (and thrive) in this environment, CSPs are accelerating the transformation of their networks from legacy, proprietary, tightly integrated technology stacks to cloud based, software plus commodity hardware environments. This technology transformation is critical to the rollout of 5G services (and it can also yield significant benefits in the management and operation of existing 4G services).

CSPs are leveraging this transformation to drive down costs, increase flexibility & agility, and benefit from the innovation of a broader ecosystem of suppliers – but there are challenges that must be overcome. 

Operational cost reductions can only be achieved by embracing automation in every process. Flexibility & agility are dependent on being able to pre-empt issues and take mitigating actions before service is interrupted. AI technologies can offer powerful approaches to reducing complexity, but to get maximum benefits, AI must be deployed as part of a targeted, systematic approach.

IBM is working with CSPs around the world to address these challenges. IBM offers solutions with AI-powered intent drive orchestration and dynamic service assurance that are designed specifically to help CSPs transform their networks and gain the maximum benefits from cloud technologies, automation and AI. These offerings, combined with our extensive partner ecosystem and worldwide execution capability, make IBM the ideal partner for CSPs as they evolve their businesses.

If CSPs are to grow ARPU and develop new revenue generating services in the coming years, they need a comprehensive, end-to-end approach to how they architect, implement and operate services in this new era of software and cloud.  With a focus on successful business outcomes and deep expertise in Hybrid Cloud and AI, IBM is uniquely positioned to help CSPs drive the transformation of both their technology and their business.


Next steps

IBM brings the depth and breadth of our industry expertise, with an open ecosystem of value-added partners, to modernize and monetize CSP networks.

To learn more, check out our recently introduced IBM Cloud Pak for Network Automation, an AI-powered telco cloud platform that enables the automation of network operations so CSPs can transform their networks, evolve to zero-touch operations, reduce OPEX and deliver services faster.


Carmel Burgess (Blog creator)

Gary O’ Driscoll (Blog contributor)

Offering Management

IBM Cloudpak for Network Automation