Digital Transformation Asia – bigger than you remember

digital transformation
Image credit: fotogestoeber /

By the time you read this, the TM Forum’s big Asia-Pacific event – Digital Transformation Asia, formerly known as TM Forum Live! Asia – will be less than 24 hours from kickoff at the Shangri-La hotel in Kuala Lumpur. And delegates returning to the show this year may notice something different – apart from the name change, obviously.

Namely, it’s bigger. A lot bigger. The charts below were compiled last week and should give you an idea, but suffice to say Digital Transformation Asia is expecting more overall delegates, more CxO-level delegates, more CSPs, more exhibitors, and more Catalyst projects on display.

digital transformation asia 2018 vs 2017 pt 1

digital transformation asia 2018 vs 2017 pt 2

Meanwhile, look at this stellar keynote line-up. Just look at it.

digital transformatiomn asia keynotes

As the name change implies, digital transformation will be the overarching key theme – and little surprise, given the TM Forum’s assessment at last year’s event that telcos simply aren’t transforming themselves fast enough to keep up with the demands that the digital economy will place on them. The Forum has spent the last 12 months addressing that dilemma with its Digital Transformation Tracker reports and its Open Digital Architecture, among other things. Expect updates on how that’s going.

The other major focus this year is the “intelligent edge”, which will become increasingly important for the industry as 5G gets closer to reality. Telcos essentially need to become digital platforms with edge-compute capabilities in situ where they are needed – something that hyperscale internet companies are already doing to various degrees. As TM Forum chief Nik Willets told Disruptive.Asia recently:

We need to think about the network slicing capabilities and opportunities, but in terms of the more complex digital use cases. If we think about smart factories and smart cities, for example, the opportunities for telcos is enormous, as it is for other industries. We need, as an industry, to be ready to grasp them.

A breakdown of the key themes across DTA’s different tracks reveals the various bases that the event aims to cover, ranging from 5G and network virtualization to AI, analytics and (of course) the B/OSS:

2025 Digital Operator – Transforming to Gain a Competitive Edge

5G is set to become a complete game changer for operators, but growth over the next decade will depend on how successfully they can transform their business and reinvent themselves. How will operators compete and counter the threat of digital native OTTs? How do you transition from a “legacy” to a digital culture? How do you manage the transformation journey step-by-step?

Reimagining Telco IT – Delivering OSS/BSS fit for the 5G era

Achieving end-to-end service orchestration across hybrid and multiple networks is a real challenge today. Cloud-native network virtualization and function through the intelligent edge is the future, but are your people and your business infrastructure ready to build an intelligent edge? What about service assurance and quality of service? Will your customers stay with you on the journey?

Unleashing the Potential of AI and Analytics – Gaining the Edge Through AI Adoption

AI is here to stay, and adopting and embedding it effectively will generate huge rewards. Missing the AI boat will mean handing market-share to competitors and possibly becoming a connectivity utility. The burgeoning Internet of Things (IoT) and the increasing demands of the customer mean that AI and Machine Learning are of critical importance. What is the appropriate mix of AI technologies for your business? What is the value proposition of AI for operators? How can operators leverage AI and the Intelligent Edge to mass customize services?

Delighting the Digital Customer – Enabling Frictionless, Zero-Touch Digital Customer Experiences

A frictionless customer experience is key to business success! Personal, augmented, virtual and immersive experiences are increasingly expected by your customers, as is omni-channel consistency. Open APIs, Data Collection and Management, Virtualization, and even Robotic Process Automation are the building blocks of the new era. How do you deliver the optimum customer experience and maximize RoI? Is it possible to enable frictionless, zero-touch digital customer experiences? And what really defines a differentiated customer experience?

Zero-Touch NFV and SDN – Orchestrating Intelligent Networks

Building and implementing a new layer of faster, more agile systems, while avoiding service disruption can be challenging, but certainly not impossible. Hybrid environment orchestration implemented with new open source and open standards, like ONAP and TM Forum’s Open Digital Architecture and APIs, are reshaping the future of agile telcos. How will you manage your OSS/BSS environment for the 5G era?

That’s a lot of questions. Disruptive.Asia will be on site, and we’ll report back as many of the answers as we can – as well as all the other questions those answers will probably raise.

The TM Forum’s Digital Transformation Asia event opens its doors tomorrow in Kuala Lumpur. Disruptive.Asia is an official media partner with the event. All the details you need are right here.

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