by Alexey Vedin, Director of Network Monetisation Products at Nexign.
As the 5G saga takes shape, telecom operators must decide how they fit. I would argue, there has never been a better time to make the transition from communications service provider (CSP) to digital service provider (DSP). The advent of transformational technologies will always signal an opportunity for businesses in their orbit. But monetisation of such innovations can prove problematic without the right business support system (BSS) in place.
According to a TM Forum report, 67% of total revenue from 5G use cases – beyond mere enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB) and fixed wireless access (FWA) – is dependent on OSS/BSS transformation. Adapting your BSS to support 5G services will have an impact on real-time domains such as rating, charging and policy control. Complex scenarios will demand the integration of many other systems, and operators will need to ensure that a single BSS can cover these. Let’s consider four use cases.
Internet of Things
IoT allows organisations as diverse as airlines and warehouses to enhance their ability to make smart decisions in real time. The low latency of 5G is very appealing when trying to deliver these kinds of systems, but it is vital not only to have an IoT-fluent BSS that understands what is being delivered and how; it is also critical that the solution provides flexible network monetisation, to manage charges and policies for different types of devices in the field.
Collaboration with partners
When competing in the Age of Content, digitally savvy consumers are the new subscriber base. To offer the kind of one-stop shop they demand, the DSP must recruit allies―application service providers (ASPs) and over-the-top (OTT) service providers—so they can provide a rich 5G experience. Via integration with the service-capability exposure function (SCEF), your BSS solution should enable content providers to create new package offers for subscribers, at will, and have more control over how they are delivered, allow the delivery of free traffic for special marketing campaigns and improve the quality of ASP traffic detection.
Legacy Wi-Fi replacement
When market share is redistributed among fixed and mobile services, DSPs need to decide how this will be managed. When mobile access through 5G can deliver very stable connections at lightning speeds, subscribers are unlikely to use legacy services such as Wi-Fi or home broadband. Your BSS needs to be able to deliver options on how to set up new usage-charge models as you phase out the old and usher in the new.
eSIM subscription management
While eSIM (embedded SIM)-ready networks are not yet widespread, change is coming and 5G may accelerate its arrival. Working with eSIM and managing subscribers and devices will not only take a flexible BSS, but unprecedented interoperability and co-operation between industry players across the global telecoms market.
Now that the race has begun, it will be to the profit only of those who recognise the integration gaps in their own house and tune up their BSS in readiness for the boundless opportunities on the horizon.