Reflections on ANGA COM 2014

Service providers are looking for ways to convert data into actionable intelligence.

Amid a fast-changing telecom industry landscape — where fast and furious consolidation occurs within and across cable, DSL, satellite and mobile — this year, Europe’s preeminent broadband industry trade show, ANGA COM, opened its doors to 17,000 visitors from more than 70 countries. It’s quite a shift for a show that was solely focused on the German cable industry until just a few years ago. 

ANGA COM has evolved from ANGA Cable into a more inclusive event, bringing together cable, satellite, and all things broadband.  This change is a testament to the role that broadband and the Internet plays in our lives today.

Broadband is undeniably a key driver of economic growth. Studies cited during ANGA COM 2014 highlighted the importance of broadband Internet to European economies, with 41% of Germany’s entire real GDP growth, or 57.5 billion Euros, attributed to broadband Internet between 2002 and 2012. According to Germany’s Association of Telecommunications and Value-Added Service Providers (VATM), each Euro earned in the telecom industry creates a further 2.30 Euros in other industries.

This growth goes beyond national borders. If we look at the attendees at ANGA COM 2014 — the exhibitors and purchasers of broadband services and goods — it’s clear that this industry is growing and facilitating global commerce. Service providers of all stripes are hard at work to make their networks more robust and services more abundant.

Service providers still have a lot ahead of them. They are busy with infrastructure expansions — existing network upgrades and new greenfield builds — as well as deploying tools to streamline and automate their operations, providing ease of access to content, and pure commerce transactions.

No matter what kind of access network technology or combination of access network technologies an operator employs, the goal is always to connect subscribers to content and commerce platforms, no matter where the subscribers are located. Consequently, multiscreen access and maintaining quality of experience as subscribers roam from device to device, from one network to another, or from one service package to another is now front and center in the service provider world. The delivery of quality of experience (QoE) will determine the winners and losers in this dynamic broadband market.

The proliferation of devices and content, along with consumers’ demand for fast, reliable, and flexible service provisioning, makes delivering a high QoE challenging. It’s even more of a challenge when subscribers have high expectations, regardless of whether they are sitting in front of their TV in the living room or on the go on a WiFi network. Consumers want to be able to access both linear and nonlinear TV and video content of their choice on both fixed-line and mobile infrastructures, via their preferred devices.

Device management and service provisioning is central to this race of enhancing customer experience. Operators also are in a constant struggle to streamline back-office operations that were originally set up for silos of services based on traditional “cycloid” OSS/BSS systems. Today, operators need to gain a complete picture of a subscriber’s experience as they access content from different sources. So it’s no wonder that big data, data integration, analytics, multiscreen, fiber deployment, IPTV, OTT, DOCSIS 3.1, CCAP, RDK, navigation and search, WiFi, service and provisioning were all hot topics at this year’s ANGA COM.

 If we look at the amount of data that subscriber activities generate on a daily basis, it’s easy to see how operators can become overwhelmed.  While service providers struggle to get their hands on useful transactional or usage information, weeding through the vast amount of data to find nuggets of useful data is often a challenge in itself. This data comes from their subscriber database, streaming data, or provisioning systems and outlines what services are being purchased and what devices are installed. Additional data from external sources, such as SNMP, IPDR, CDR, and TLV files add to the complexity.

The goal for every service provider is to focus on unifying the data on their network into actionable intelligence. Tools that focus on providing visibility into trends and issues, such as bandwidth consumption patterns on a network, are therefore essential for operators to plan for the long term. To find out more about these kind of solutions, click here.

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