Setting the Foundation for Telecom Innovation

Many of the leading voices in the telecom and technology industries, including Cisco and Gartner, expect virtualization to fundamentally change the way telecom services are deployed...

Building block #2:
End-to-end automation

Telecom innovation is not possible without a comprehensive layer of automation underpinning systems, infrastructure and services. For example, automation is key to unlocking the full potential of cloud-based portals. Without this technology, telecom service providers would not be able to offer customers self-service capabilities and build out network capabilities on demand. Top-down automation provides the flexibility needed to connect cloud portals with network controllers and orchestrators, making true self-service possible.

Automation also paves the way for faster service delivery, allowing vendors to offer advanced telecom services like Software-Defined Networking (SDN) and Bandwidth on Demand, providing enhanced business value to their customers.

Automation needs to be a fundamental component to all layers of the telecom stack, including at the OSS/BSS level. Core processes such as network configuration, fault management, network inventory and service provisioning can all be dramatically improved through automation. Achieving a degree of sophistication in this regard is a prerequisite for more widespread innovation and transformation.

Laying this technological groundwork now will pay off over time as companies look to implement more advanced telecom capabilities like SDN and Network Function Virtualization (NFV), bridging legacy processes and infrastructure with new systems. In this way, telecom service providers can improve service delivery and performance today while building toward the future.

Building block #3: On-demand services through virtualization

Virtualization is the final piece to achieving telecom innovation and digital transformation. Once companies have sufficient automation in place, they can implement virtualized platforms that support on-demand service delivery.

Many of the leading voices in the telecom and technology industries, including Cisco and Gartner, expect virtualization to fundamentally change the way telecom services are deployed in the coming years. By virtualizing aspects of the network, telecom companies can centralize service delivery for enterprise customers and offer a wide variety of on-demand features like compute and storage.

Going further, features like NFV, SDN, SD-WAN and Virtualized Network Functions (VNFs) can be created and added onto existing services at any time, allowing for more flexibility and capabilities than ever before:

  • SDN: SDN shifts network control processes away from physical controllers so it occurs within the software itself. Using this technology, service providers can offer Bandwidth on Demand and other features that allow customers to expand network capabilities whenever needed—and be billed on a usage basis.
  • SD-WAN: SD-WAN allows for expanded network flexibility, improving application performance at branch offices and other remote locations.
  • VNF: VNFs can come in a wide variety of packages, ranging from security tools like firewalls and intrusion protection to virtualized network components like routers.

Telecom companies that take advantage of this opportunity will be able to offer their enterprise customers more services from a single provider, packaged in one portal.

Laying the foundation for telecom innovation

To remain competitive in the telecom industry, vendors will need to offer clear value-adds to potential customers. Such differentiators will also be necessary to keep existing clients happy and to reduce customer churn.

Laying down these core building blocks—singular, cloud-based portals, end-to-end automation and on-demand service—will establish the technological foundation needed to create new revenue streams and improve the customer experience. Forward-thinking service providers will be able to bring more customers on board and will ultimately be more competitive in their marketplaces by offering more features, differentiation capabilities and easy-to-use interfaces and customer portals.


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