Posts tagged ‘telcos’

Exclusive Interview with Goran Car, Head of Strategic Business Unit and CTO, ComCloud in Combis #telcocloud

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We interviewed our speaker Goran Car, Head of Strategic Business Unit and CTO ComCloud in Combis, on trends and development which are shaping Cloud market today and tomorrow.

THE INTERVIEW


What is the latest telco cloud project you are working on? Please tell us more about it.

Our Cloud solution ComCloud is a telco oriented, comprehensive and modular Cloud solution which provides facilities for automated provision of Cloud services and infrastructure management via self-service portals.

We are in the process of finishing a project for HT Eronet in Bosnia and Herzegovina and one incumbent telecom within EU. Both are Public Cloud projects with Marketplace and SSO enablers and basic IaaS services. In coming months it will be extended with additional services and different SaaS offerings.

Within the projects we tried to give the most that Cloud can give, taking into account customer wishes, of course.

For more information visit my lecture ‘Where Have All the Marketplaces Gone’. I will talk about best practice examples, guidelines and ideas how to utilize marketplace, as the most common centerpiece of Cloud selling strategies, in the best, most appealing and market-specific way, how to utilize marketplace in geographically-bound markets and how to make successful go-to-market strategy and maximize potential of Cloud services.

What telcos need to work on to provide best-in-class cloud?

We believe that user experience is crucial. Customer must be provided with best-in-class experience. Consumer is conditio sine qua non.

Consumerization is a very well-known trend, but it must be taken to next level in providing (business) Cloud services. Seamless integration of Marketplace and services, responsive web, subject-action relationship instead of classic action-subject web are all crucial elements for providing modern Cloud services. Technology is available to everybody, so what we feel will drive future Cloud business are experience and bundled offers.

We were thinking about trends and we have developed a solution which offers extensive customer experience, enabling service providers to efficiently distribute their Cloud services, and users to effectively self-manage them. Customers are thus able to manage their resources more promptly and thoroughly in order to adapt expenses to their actual needs. At the same time, the system provides service providers with an opportunity to expand into new markets more easily, removing all physical barriers which prevented them to do so until now.

What do you think is going to be the next big ‘thing’ in the telco cloud market?

I believe that there will be greater way of interworking, both between different Cloud services and customer’s internal IT. Moreover, customers will have the possibility to move between services more easily and configure more than one service together in greater solution.

For instance, we are experimenting with setting up virtual network service, being able to connect different services by usage of self-service portal.  It is important to constantly think of the needs of end users and to think innovatively.

What is your favorite book or film about the future of technologies?

It might not be so much about future of technology, but I really like Brian Green’s “The Elegant Universe”. It sets a theory, that when and if proved and detailed, it can open a completely new view on building things and technology that was once considered impossible.

REGISTER YOUR FREE PASS HERE.


 

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Goran Car will held a lecture ‘Where Have All the Marketplaces Gone’ on Wednesday, 29th of April, at 12:40 in Ballroom, Radisson Blu Portman, London.

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Telco Cloud: IT News, Trends and Predictions for 2015 #telcocloud

Telco Cloud. 
28-29 April 2015
Radisson Blu Portman Hotel, London

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Ovum reveals telcos must invest in the flexibility and agility of their IT estates in 2015

The telecoms industry is showing signs of recovery due to the positive economic scenario, and telecoms will be one of the top industries for IT spending in the next 12–18 months, according to global analyst firm Ovum.

Based on Ovum’s latest Telco IT Trends to Watch report*, telco IT budgets are on the rise, with a lot of investment directed at either optimizing network assets and infrastructure or improving service quality and the customer experience.

Trends to watch for telco IT in 2015:

A brighter economic outlook and voracious demand for high-quality content and services on smart devices has renewed telco interest in the value they provide from a customer perspective and the quality of the customer experience.
Omni-channel engagements will inform investment in CRM strategies for sales, marketing, and operations. Relevance and content of services, packages, and customer care will be a differentiator.
Outsourcing engagements between telcos and IT service providers will intensify.

Read more

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Telco Cloud 2015 Outlook

Analyst Opinion By DIMITRIS MAVRAKIS

WHAT ARE THE KEY DRIVERS/OPPORTUNITIES FOR SERVICE PROVIDERS THAT ARE CONSIDERING NFV? CONVERSELY, WHAT ARE THE KEY CHALLENGES?

The biggest opportunity driving CSPs to adopt NFV or SDN is the ability to operate a more efficient and cost-effective network. Also, NFV and SDN make it much easier and faster to create and deliver services. The biggest argument for NFV is that it enables network components to make the transition from hardware to software. In other words, components now run on commoditized hardware platforms that might even be in the data center (standard computing platforms or COTS equipment).

CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE FULL Q+A

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CompTIAs 5th Annual Trends in Cloud Computing

In the five years that CompTIA has been studying cloud computing, the topic has shifted from a potential game-changer to an essential ingredient of modern IT. IDC estimates the public cloud market to have reached $45.7 billion in 2013, and they expect it to grow at 23% CAGR through 2018. On the private cloud side, IDC estimates that worldwide spending on hosted private cloud services will surpass $24 billion by 2016…

READ MORE .
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Cisco throws its hat back into the enterprise collaboration ring

CISCO, Telco Cloud Forum’s Principal Sponsor is working on a new offering for the enterprise collaboration market: Project Squared – a mobile-first, virtual meeting room for teams. Project Squared is still an early work in progress, but the vendor is hoping that customers will like what they see and not defect to the likes of Microsoft, Google, or Citrix, all of whom have competing offerings in the realtime communication and collaboration market. The offering is delivered by the Cisco Collaboration Cloud.

READ MORE.

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Industry News

Verizon has promised rolling upgrades to its cloud platform that don’t impose downtime or require customer intervention following the latest update period, which lasted nearly two days.

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Telcos voice concerns about taking core networks to the cloud #telcocloud

Telcos voice concerns about taking core networks to the cloud | Business Cloud News

Under threat from companies not traditionally viewed as competitors, telcos are racing to both offer cloud services to end-user customers and tap into the cloud to run core network functions in a bid to make their value propositions more competitive and infrastructure more dynamic. But cloud experts from Orange, Swisscom and AT&T have each voiced concerns around just how capable the sector may be at managing such a bold transformation with existing tools.

Speaking at the OpenStack Summit in Paris on Tuesday, experts from major European and US telecoms firms, all of which are experimenting with using OpenStack to stand up core network services or cloud services for end-users (or both), agreed that existing telecoms industry regulation can pose challenges when introducing NFV and cloud architectures to underpin them.

Toby Ford, AVP cloud technology, strategy and planning at AT&T, which has made some progress in recent months with its NFV experiments and in rolling out its cloud stack, said that the extent to which telcos in the US can virtualise networks is limited in some part by stringent regulations.

“The actual facilities we use have a lot of legal rules we have to apply, so we’re doing a lot of work to work around those as we go forward [with NFV],” he said.

This issue, particularly with respect to security, isn’t altogether dissimilar from what other highly regulated verticals are facing. The key question is how do you as a company demonstrate a virtual appliance is as reliable as physical hardware in terms of resilience, uptime, security, and so forth?

Markus Brunner, head of standardisation in the strategy and innovation department of Swisscom said guaranteeing quality of service, which in some contexts is legislated, is also a key challenge.

“It’s really about guarantees. We have a set of services which require guarantees – legally require certain guarantees,” he said.

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Telco Cloud 2015 Survey Results #Telcocloud

Hello Telco Cloud community,

Exciting news – we are now finalising the agenda for the 2015 Telco Cloud Forum. For the past month I have been researching with the industry to identify challenges and trends that the Telco Cloud community is facing currently when launching cloud services. After speaking to over 50 top industry experts it has become clear that there are definitely key common trends amongst telcos, that we’ll be covering in the 2015 agenda. Let me tell you a bit more about them….

Virtualisation is the big topic that everybody is talking about!  As you might remember, last year we had a stream devoted to technical innovations, including virtualisation. It went so well that you’ve asked us to expand it in 2015. So watch out for a whole stream on new trends, interesting case studies and exciting tools on NFV, SDN and network virtualisation. We will bring all the relevant solutions and Telco cloud virtualisation practical case studies. You will walk away knowing how virtualisation is changing the game for Telcos’ cloud business?

Not surprisingly, cloud security appeared to be another major topic. Over 70% of my calls mentioned that security is becoming progressively more important to Telcos looking to win in the cloud space.  Building a strong holistic approach towards a wide range of security problems is ‘a must’ for Telcos. It’s not an IT service anymore, it’s Telcos’ USP.

Since we launched the Forum over 5 years ago we’ve been covering Go-to-Market strategies or in other words ‘How to Sell’ and ‘What to Sell’.  The 2015 Telco Cloud Forum will be covering this crucial and essential topic from all the possible angles. We will delve into the deepest details of Business Models and Go-to-Market strategies. Have a look yourself at some of the sessions we have lined up:

  • Oxford Style Debates: What do Telcos Sell Best?
  • SaaS and other XaaS: Challenges to Overcome and the Right Decisions to Make
  • Hybrid Models – Delivering Best-in-class High-performance and High-Availability
  • M2M Opportunities for Telco Cloud
  • Workshop: Advancing SaaS Business Models: Enhancing Product Portfolio
  • Unified Communication as an Essential Business Reality
  • 360 Degree Panel on How to Sell the Cloud? Hear from all parties involved in selling the Cloud: each panellist will be a representative from each market player: Telco, System Integrator, Cloud experts and Cloud Service Providers
  • The SME as the Number 1 Customer Group that Telcos can Grow their Revenue From
  • How ODEON & UCI Cinemas Group Are Developing their ICT Strategy Implementing Cloud Based Services
  • Utilizing New Channels to Attract Existing or Adjacent Customer Segments
  • New and Enhanced Revenue Streams from Enterprise Mobility
  • Panel: What are the Skillsets Required to Successfully Sell Cloud – Learning A, B, C Once Again

Finally, there is no way we can avoid the hot topic of the moment, Big Data and Analytics. Over the past few years Big Data has evolved from being a buzz word to something Telcos are increasingly implementing and using when improving customer experience and operational efficiency. The main challenges that operators told me they are facing are all about maximizing existing Data in the Cloud.  Knowing which privileges Telcos have and learning about practical lessons and pain points of Big Data implementation are the top priorities for Telcos now.

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How to succeed in the Cloud by Tom Platt, Commercial Director, BCSG #telcocloud

In the run up to the Telco Cloud World Forum North America, speaker Tom Platt, from BCSG gave his view on what it takes to succeed in the Cloud!

To succeed in the cloud you’ll need to make some changes

When small businesses move into the cloud, they’ve chosen to make a big change in the way they do things. This change will help them save time, find new customers, and more. But it’s so radical it’s no surprise they often need time to think about it, before making the move.

It’s no different for their providers. In a previous post I wrote about telcos changing their approach to sales to get customers signing up to – and using – cloud services. At the heart of that change is a shift in mindset that needs to go beyond sales and take in the whole organisation.

a. Start at the top.

Senior management must lead the way and set the tone and the agenda for your cloud service. Because everyone in your business needs…

To view the full article, visit: http://northamerica.cloudworldseries.com/to-succeed-in-the-cloud-by-tom-platt-bcsg/

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Telefónica Group CIO: Using cloud to regain ground lost to OTT players #telcocloud

Source: Buisness Cloud News

With operations in 24 countries, over 120,000 employees globally, Telefónica Group, one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world, is looking to put at IT at the core of everything that it does in order to compete globally in an industry currently in the throes of a digital revolution. Phil Jordan, group chief information officer at Telefónica tells BCN that cloud is at the centre of how the company plans to regain terrain lost to over-the-top (OTT) players, make its core mobile and fixed line operations more flexible and scalable, and enable it to provide next generation digital services.

“IT is a strategic differentiator for the company, but it hasn’t always been perceived that way, even when I became CIO,” says Jordan, who took up his current role at Telefónica in 2011. Context, he says, is essential to understanding why this perception proliferated within the company and throughout the telecoms sector more broadly, and why the operator is currently spearheading so many new digital initiatives.

“We’re a business operating in an industry that failed to innovate fast enough, which has probably created the opportunity for the Vibers and the WhatsApps of the world, and I think we’ve failed to innovate in our own product because, like a lot of businesses, we felt we didn’t need to because we were making lots of money,” he explains. “You get complacent.”

The situation is cause for concern, not just at Telefónica but for most telcos, which could be losing up to $386bn cumulatively by 2018 to OTT players like Skype and WhatsApp according to research and consulting firm Ovum.

It is within this context that Telefónica has sought to become more digital, an effort complicated by its continued growth and a series of acquisitions. As one of the biggest and oldest telcos with lots of fixed line heritage, it has accumulated a very complex IT systems landscape over the years, which Jordan says the company is constantly trying to simplify.

“One of our big challenges as a federation of separate businesses is that we have to remove complexity. We’ve managed to overcomplicate the industry, our business, and our internal systems over the last 20 years,” he says.

But the biggest challenge, he explains, is inextricably linked to what Jordan believes is the biggest opportunity for the operator: data.

“We’ve always had a tremendous amount of data, we’ve always been a big data company, but how do you derive insights from the data? Because of systems fragmentation, we’ve struggled to derive real insight and particularly global insight through the use of data. Getting a 360 degree view of our customers is actually a much bigger challenge for us than working out how to leverage analytics and big data systems.”

Driving core platforms and systems change at Telefónica

Because of the way the industry grew, Jordan explains, the lack of recognition in how important IT was moving forward, “we’ve ended up with such fragmented systems that they don’t really lend themselves well to forming that 360 degree customer view. But that’s a problem because data is the new battleground and the future differentiator for our industry.”

“We’ve gone from having almost 7,000 systems three years ago, down to 4,200 now, so we’re slowly simplifying our estate.”

The company’s SaaS and virtualisation strategies are central to this process. Telefónica is a large user of Office 365, SAP SuccessFactors and Salesforce among other big name cloud services. It deploys these services from a private cloud platform hosted in its massive datacentre in Spain, which at a whopping 65,700 m2 is one of the largest in Europe, dwarfed only by Portugal Telecom’s recently announced Covilha datacentre.

By centralising these services the company is able to leverage its cloud platform and generate operational efficiencies through a shared services approach, while ensuring local standards and businesses processes can be maintained where necessary, and by purchasing commoditised solutions off-the-shelf the company has enjoyed significant cost benefits.

The operator has also virtualised a number of its internal platforms, which allows the company to sweat its existing assets and make its datacentre resources more scalable and flexible.

By the end of this year Jordan’s team will have virtualised about 40 per cent of the group’s IT servers, and the company is now taking this approach to the most mission-critical system of all – the core network, through network function virtualisation (NFV). Along with global CTO Enrique Blanco and his team the company is working on a proof of concept for a virtual radio access network (vRAN). Work on a virtual Evolved Packet Core, vIMS, vDNS and vDHCP is also set to conclude this year as the operator looks to virtualise 30 per cent of all new infrastructure by 2016.

Virtualising these system will allow Telefónica to deploy network assets in a way that allows them to be managed centrally and deployed globally, while making them more flexible, scalable and less expensive to acquire and maintain than legacy networking hardware.

The operator has taken a slightly different approach with its business support and operational support systems. Telefónica recognises the need to transform BSS and OSS in order to have these digital capabilities and a foundation for the future. But it’s not consolidating these systems or putting one BSS or OSS across the group because it’s just not practical or doable across many group companies, Jordan explains.

“We are doing greenfield BSS implementations in 14 separate countries at the moment, so we’ve accelerated beyond belief in pace and the urgency, and these are with the same standard processes and architecture, using three different vendors, heavily based on standards and reused on processes. So core BSS and OSS processes reused country to country, in clusters of the same technology.”

The company’s multimillion dollar investment into its global BSS overhaul has as much to do with eliminating data systems fragmentation and simplifying the back-end of the services it offers as much as driving digital engagement with customers and readying itself for the company’s future, which Jordan says increasingly sees digital services at its core.

“We must become more digital in our interactions with our customers. The new generation of Telefónica customers don’t engage with us in the way they used to. Online is an important channel for us but a ‘digital only’ channel experience needs to be created in all the countries we operate in.”

But Jordan says this is part of a broader strategy to drive digital services – particularly platform-based services – within Telefónica, and as a key component of its market offerings.

“I don’t think we’ll ever be able to innovate as fast as the model that now exists around the internet and around the digital world, so adopting an open platform that innovators and entrepreneurs want to base their applications and their services on, and provide capabilities to innovate with, is central to where we want to go, and becoming a platform business, offering platform as a service, is a key element to our future.”

View the full article here!

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Security issues put telcos off BSS in the cloud

The majority of operators have not yet made the call on whether to migrate their BSS environment to the cloud, according to the 2014 Telecoms.com Intelligence Global Industry Survey.

More than a third have decided against the movement and less than 20 per cent have actually put initiatives in place to accomplish such a shift. The findings of the Telecoms.com Industry Survey 2014 sought to establish which elements of the BSS environment are being addressed with the most urgency along with how and where operators are looking to the cloud to enhance their performance.

Questions in this section were put to operators exclusively and in addressing their BSS environments, operators clearly have a good deal more thinking to do. Almost half of respondents said they were not sure whether their organisation was planning a move to a cloud-based BSS solution inside the next 12 months, suggesting that for many operators decisions on this question have not been taken. More than one third reported that there are no such plans in place, while 17.9 per cent of respondents said that their businesses are planning a cloud BSS deployment this year.

It is important to understand why more than 80 per cent of represented operators are currently not committing to a cloud-based BSS solution and it is perhaps not surprising that security is chief among their concerns.

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Respondents were asked to rank a range of concerns for severity on a scale of one to seven, where seven represented a “very serious concern”. Security issues was scored as six or seven by 39.7 per cent or respondents.

“Security was and still is a concern for operators when choosing a cloud based solution but it is possible to achieve the full range of cloud benefits, like cost savings and agility, without compromising on security,” says Yuval Mayron, general manager, Amdocs Product Group.

“The key for operators or MVNOS is choosing a well-established and recognised industry partner that they can rely on and grow with. This peace of mind can be achieved when operators and MVNOs select a complete solution, both on the platform and on the service side, to guarantee service availability, customer satisfaction and that all solution components are certified and meet the highest standards in the industry.”

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Source: http://www.businesscloudnews.com

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