Building an open source telecommunications infrastructure is highly attractive to telecommunication enterprises. Both for operators in low ARPU markets where cost reduction is imperative, as for telco’s aiming to gain more control over their ability to innovate and differentiate.
In the last couple of years we have seen a huge migration by telecommunications providers from closed proprietary telco hardware to open source solutions on generic hardware. This migration is still going on in this market, as we speak. In this blog I will discuss 6 points why this is happening so rapidly.
Telco’s naturally balance investments in new technologies and infrastructure maintenance costs versus the ability to innovate services for their customers. Open source solutions seem to provide a way to combine both sides.
#6 – Reduce infrastructure costs
By eliminating license fees paid to proprietary solution vendors under the traditional software procurement model. As open source software usually runs on general purpose hardware, it could also cut the capital investments and maintenance costs of the telco’s in the infrastructure. In addition, the current trend towards virtualization and SDN should enable a shift to more programmable and flexible communications platforms.
#5 – Prevent vendor lock-ins
In a highly specialized technology market as the telecom industry, vendor lock-in by only hand full of vendors has slowed innovation down. Telco’s are there for unable to deliver differentiated offerings to gain a competitive advantage. Introducing open source solutions provides a way to lessen telco’s dependency on specific vendors and increase internal innovation capabilities.
#4 – Improvement of operator networks
The above points aim to reduce costs. But apart from costs, a very important point is to improve the network for the current customer base. By improving customer experience of the current services, telco’s will be able to maintain the current customer base while adding new customers by adding new features.
#3 – Enable infrastructure transformation
An open cloud infrastructure is able to enable a telco to govern and orchestrate their network resources and quickly create, customize and personalize new functions and services in an independent way and offer them to the customers. Employing an open source platform could give a telco a competitive advantage enabling IT modernization, digital optimization and invention of new digital business models for their customers.
#2 – Integration with enterprise services
Another important feature is to be able to add services for new technologies like AI, machine learning, robotics, industrial integration, gaming, manufacturing, et cetera. When enterprises use open infrastructure; they are able to integrate new technologies faster.
#1 – Regain market share
Telecom providers have been busy with operator networks and providing customers with connections for voice and data in an as much as possible automated carrier network. But by dealing with the fierce competition they were not able focus on opportunities for extra market shares close to their current activities; for example datacenter hosting services. With open infrastructure it will be easier to regain market share by enabling new services.
Each of above reasons has specific requirements for which open infrastructures offers specific solutions.
I am happy to read your thoughts about this. Do you see additional reasons for telecom enterprises to migrate from proprietary to open?