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ISSUE 10, 2014

Amdocs

Enabling Cost-Effective Network Rollout: Why existing approaches are no longer relevant
Use customer insight and revenue impact to drive network optimization
Infusing intelligence into the Order-to-Activation Process
Mobile Wallet Singapore 2014
The critical role of IoT service providers
 
Enabling Cost-Effective Network Rollout: Why existing approaches are no longer relevant by Phil Bull, Solutions Marketing Manager, OSS Division, Amdocs
Data demand today is phenomenal and is having a huge impact on service provider networks for both fixed line and mobile. Networks are becoming increasingly complex such as with the gradual introduction of heterogeneous networks (HetNets), combining traditional macrocells, Wi-Fi and LTE small cells, to provide the very dense mobile networks required to cope with the capacity demand of the everyday consumer.

For service providers, consumer expectations of increased network performance with more data throughput for a minimal increase in price put significant pressure on their network organizations. Networks themselves have to be rolled out faster than ever before, often with smaller engineering teams. We have seen significant downward price pressure on the physical network elements. In radio access networks (RAN), base stations have never been cheaper with newer microcellular and small cell indoor units costing a few thousand dollars. But alongside these price reductions, there are other significant challenges to rolling out any network.

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Key challenges to network rollout include:

Volume of network elements: Network rollouts typically require huge volumes of equipment to be physically rolled out.

High Project Costs: While equipment may have fallen in price, labor costs typically are subject to annual inflation and wage increases.

Project Delays: These are inevitable; particularly where there is handoff between different organizations and the scope of work is poorly defined.

Impaired Quality: The fitting of an incorrect cable rack, provision of DC instead of AC power, or missing components are all typical quality issues faced by network rollout engineers.

More Site Visits: The impact of poor quality and project delays typically results in an increased number of site visits or "truck rolls" required.

Lost Accountability: In complex projects it is sometimes difficult to conduct a root cause analysis around delays. The inability to track activities leads to lost accountability and increasing project costs.

Need for Higher Skills: With an increasing number of equipment variants, service providers either need a higher skilled work force, or they need to find to a method of increasing the competency of their existing workforce.

All of these factors adversely impact the economics of network rollout but a significant percentage of operational project costs can be reduced through improving existing planning tools and processes.

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This is an area that has not advanced significantly over the last twenty years, with many service providers relying on the same approaches to planning and project management they used when rolling out their networks in the 1990s. Improvements here can deliver significant reductions in network rollout and network design costs.

Over the last two years Amdocs has worked with a tier-1 US operator to develop a planning, engineering and design solution to support their rollout of small cells, and the results have been significant. The solution, Amdocs Network Rollout Solution, has delivered a reduction of around 25% in network rollout costs and approximately a 30% reduction in network design effort, which has made a significant impact on the overall program cost.

The Amdocs solution provides automated planning and project orchestration to reduce costs and speed up planning and deployment of mobile and fixed networks. With consumer expectations of increased network performance and significantly increased data throughput for a minimal increase in price, the opportunity to reduce rollout costs through improved efficiency is difficult to resist.

Amdocs provides a wealth of experience and solutions across the network lifecycle that can help operators optimize their network performance based on customer value, cost-effectively manage their networks and next generation network rollouts, while maximizing their ability to monetize their network assets.

To learn more about Amdocs' solutions in the network, visit www.amdocs.com/xmarksnetwork



Remarks:
This article first appeared in Global Telecoms Business. Please click on the link to view the full version:
http://digital.turn-page.com/i/399088
 
Use customer insight and revenue impact to drive network optimization by Neil Coleman, Marketing Director, Amdocs
New approaches are needed to ensure network quality in today's complex overloaded data networks.



Image shows high revenue locations (red) in a major European city. Click image to view full size.

Service providers are judged on their ability to deliver high-quality network experiences to their customers. This is especially true for mobile service providers (MSPs), whose "over the air" radio access technologies are highly sensitive to geographic location and subscriber demand. In a recent survey of subscribers conducted by On Device Research for Amdocs when asked "What do you least like about the services your current mobile operator provides?" 47 percent put lack of mobile data coverage at the top of their list.

What do we mean by network quality?

For customers: it's all about having good network connectivity and performance when and where they need it. With increasingly data-hungry smartphones, it is driven by bandwidth: "I want to watch Netflix during my commute". This shift from voice to data has changed the network quality game, putting significant pressure on MSPs. Meeting the growing demand for data has increased network complexity, making it more difficult to create consistent customer experiences. At the same time, CAPEX and OPEX are not available to deliver ubiquitous high-quality network experiences.

This crunch is forcing MSPs to change their traditional approach to delivering network quality. Though our partnerships with over 80 MSPs, Amdocs is seeing three key trends emerging:

  1. A shift from network centric to customer-centric measures of quality
    In our work with service providers, significant customer experience problems are nearly always discovered, either for specific segments like corporate customers or at high-value locations such as transport hubs. The answer is to combine network KPIs with customer experience KPIs that accurately capture the customer experiences for individual subscribers when and where they use the network. This shift also enables MSPs to understand when network quality matters and when it doesn't – there is no point having HD video-ready network connectivity in a location where subscribers only make voice calls.
     
  2. A poor correlation of network performance and investment with customer satisfaction and revenue
    Joining intelligence from the IT and network worlds quickly establishes where there is a mismatch between network quality and revenue potential – greatly simplifying all network-related decisions. For example Amdocs is seeing how MSPs' ability to know how much revenue is generated by a specific street or neighbourhood block greatly simplifies network decisions.
     
  3. Operators are looking to increased automation to cope with the growing complexity of mobile data networks
    The real power of automation is unleashed when it is guided by customer experience and revenue insights. During network rollout, customer experience insights can rapidly pinpoint and resolve post-launch issues that plague new networks. However it is the ability to link automated network action with customer experience in live networks that is truly transformative and Amdocs is at the forefront of two key approaches to delivering optimized network quality.

    The adoption of Self-Optimizing Networks (SON) solutions that deliver automated configuration of thousands of radio access network configuration parameters to optimize network capacity and coverage is greatly reducing management complexity. The Amdocs SON solution uniquely uses customer experience and value inputs to ensure that coverage is optimized for high-revenue locations and that traffic balancing doesn't negatively impact key customers.

    The Amdocs Smart Net solution ensures a seamless network experience between Wi-Fi and cellular networks through policy-driven offload, using network intelligence (congestion) along with subscriber identity, profile, preferred partners, application type and roaming status to optimize offload decisions for individual subscribers.
To learn more about Amdocs' solutions in the network, visit www.amdocs.com/xmarksnetwork



Remarks:
This article first appeared in Global Telecoms Business. Please click on the link to view the full version:
http://digital.turn-page.com/i/399088
 
Infusing Intelligence into the Order-to-Activation Process by Dayana Nevo, SBU Marketing, Amdocs
A recent survey demonstrates the gap between the importance service providers' place to O2A and actual capabilities in the area, despite its direct impact on customer experience.

Order-to-Activation (O2A) is a hugely sensitive yet critical area for service providers. It is the lifeline that hooks subscribers up to their services as well as a key artery for resolving issues. Consumers expect the process to be as simple and straightforward as switching on the light but in reality this isn't the case. Given the heightened consumer expectations, one would think service providers would use the data collected during this process to predict and proactively prevent issues. Think again.

A recent survey conducted by Ovum, on behalf of Amdocs indicates a huge gap between capabilities service providers have to put the data collected to effective use and their belief in its importance. With annual order fallout related losses surpassing $52 billion, it's quite surprising that service providers have continued to maintain the same process inefficiencies, especially since it results in order fallout, order cancellation (1 of 4 cancel their order, on average) and missed customer due dates, directly impacting customer experience. The survey pinpoints several areas that address the gap between service provider capabilities in O2A and its importance.



"Data collected during the O2A process enables service providers to identify root causes that can serve not only to improve the order handling process itself, but also to improve key business outcomes," said Clare McCarthy, Lead Analyst Telco operations & IT at Ovum. "To realize these benefits, service providers need to apply BI and analytic practices in order to know what to look for, and correctly predict and prevent order fallout."

Getting to the bottom of order failure

Preventing order issues is essential for assuring order fulfillment, but intelligent handling of existing order fallout is also crucial.



It seems service providers must streamline, automate and analyze the O2A process by predicting and preventing order fallout if they're to take elevate customer experience. Seen positively, service providers have an opportunity too.

Replace your O2A crystal ball

As the world of connected devices continues to grow and lines of business converge, service providers will need to better manage ever-increasing volumes across the O2A process. To realize these benefits, service providers must have an end to end view of their systems and processes to identify, preempt, predict and resolve issues that impact customer experience.

They need a partner with a strong commitment to business KPIs along with a strong focus on innovation to develop and deliver cutting edge technology, best practices and tools, including analytical tools and methodologies. This is precisely where some innovative service focused companies like Amdocs have taken full accountability for the process and applied their holistic, automated, analytics-based approach to assess, manage and proactively optimize the entire process.

For the full O2A Ovum white paper download or requesting for more information about O2A, please contact dayana.nevo@amdocs.com
 
Mobile Wallet Singapore 2014 by Bhavana Ravindran, Product Marketing Manager, Mobile Financial Services, Amdocs
Don't leave home without... your wallet? Credit card or mobile phone?

Leading credit card issuers, Asian banks, telco operators and ecosystem stakeholders from Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Bangladesh and Singapore convened at the Mobile Wallet 2014 event in Singapore on October 8 - 9, to discuss payment strategies for serving the unbanked and how to tailor their mobile payment strategies to scale current deployments and reach mass adoption.

We've seen the rise of plastic replacing cash transactions. By end of 2013, Asia Pacific saw a total of 4 billion mobile subscribers, 60% of global total, while less than 20% of the population has bank accounts – thus there is huge potential to leverage the low-cost mobile technology to deliver affordable financial services and improve lives of billions of people and small merchants in Asia.

  • Amdocs Vice President Justin Ho shared the findings of a recent ethnography research of branchless banking agents in Indonesia focused on "Empowering Indonesia's Change Agents" for Financial Inclusion – where he discussed how mobile technology can empower the agent distribution network to profitably serve the productive poor and 55 million micro-entrepreneurs of Indonesia.
    View his presentation here >>
     
  • Mercantile Bank Bangladesh EVP and Head of Mobile Banking Mr Rahman shared how they went to market with Savings-Payment-Purchase-Transfer leveraging a three tiered agent model to tap the unbanked segment.
     
  • Globe Telecom M-commerce COO Xavier Marzan shared the award winning Globe Charge mechanism that changed the landscape of payment acceptance of merchant community
Amdocs Mobile Financial Services President Patrick McGrory, Vice President Sharath Dorbala and team also met up with payment executives from Globe, True Telecom, XL Axiata, Mandiri Bank, etc. to discuss new strategies for driving scale and uptake of their mobile wallet services.

To learn more about how Amdocs Business Acceleration Services can help you implement your mobile payments strategy and scale uptake of your mobile wallet implementation, please contact bhavana.ravindran@amdocs.com
 
The critical role of IoT service providers by Kfir Dan-Ari, Marketing Director, Compact CES & M2M, Amdocs
Take car makers for example: As IoT service providers, they own the end customer (the car owners) and are seen as responsible for the end to end service. It is very important for the car makers to maintain that position, because it strengthens the connection between the customer and the brand.

But what happens when dozens of in-car services are provided by other companies? For example, insurance companies, toll-roads, parking lots, road assistance, road emergency services – analysts estimate ~50 services to run in the car, most of which are provided by 3rd party.

Who is responsible for providing the holistic experience now?

Similar to the way we handle dozens of apps on our smartphones, many of these services will be provided independently of the car makers. But in some cases the car maker can give added value by offering these complimenting services as part of the connected car package.

In this scenario, the car maker's role as IoT service provider is becoming extremely challenging: To provide, manage, support, and bill for all these services, and then settle with the various partners is a tricky task. When we translate all these complexities to tangible requirements, we end up with BSS platforms that resemble the sophistication and complexity that CSPs face… and this is where Amdocs is willing to help.

In Amdocs we believe that CSPs are in best position to enable the IoT service providers take this step up. The IoT providers will be seeking BSS solutions – in fact RFPs from various IoT providers have already been published – and we believe that the CSPs can provide BSS-on-Behalf-of (BoBo) solutions that will meet these requirements. This is a win-win situation: The IoT providers will get access to sophisticated BSS solutions in a low-risk revenue share model, and the CSPs will get a significant revenue stream from the fast growing IoT market, on top of the core connectivity revenues.

In this text we referred to car makers, but this is really just one example. Similar complexity – and opportunities – will increase in other IoT verticals, too.
Come and join Amdocs in M2M Business Platform, one of the biggest M2M industry events in APAC.
http://m2mbusiness-platform.com/
Kfir Dan-Ari
Asia M2M Business Platform in Kuala Lumpur
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Asia M2M Business Platform in Kuala Lumpur
Kfir Dan-Ari
Asia M2M Business Platform in Kuala Lumpur
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