At last month’s PTC 2017 event, I had the privilege of moderating a keynote panel that discussed the future of telecoms carriers in the coming digital ecosystem that is disrupting the traditional carrier status quo. The overall response from the panelists: they’re fully prepared to embrace that future, and have a firm understanding of the changes they’ll have to undergo to play in that ecosystem. In short, they’re keen to make disruption a part of their value stack.
The panel, titled “Future-proofing Tomorrow’s Carriers Today”, explored the role of carriers in the digital ecosystem, new opportunities that disruption will create for them and the impact on business models and internal processes and corporate culture. The panelists – PCCW Global CEO Marc Halbfinger, CITIC Telecom International CPC CEO Stephen Ho, and Hutchison Global Communications President of International & Carrier Business Andrew Kwok – rejected the concept of future-proofing (“Future-proofing is a myth” said Ho), but generally agreed that carriers will be prepared for the future by having a full understanding of where the business is headed and planning accordingly.
Now that the full video of the panel is available on PTC TV, you can watch it for the juicy details (see below), but here are some quick bullet-point takeaways:
- One key thing telcos have that OTT players don’t is infrastructure.
- OTT players aren’t eating away the traditional business but creating new revenue streams and opportunities for everyone.
- Telcos and OTT players will find ways to partner for mutual benefit (and find a way to monetize those partnerships to everyone’s satisfaction).
- Telcos need to adjust their business models and even financial models to play in this game.
- Telcos also need to adjust their internal mindset – from the top down – for everything from automation of internal processes to the concept of rolling out services quickly and improving them on the fly rather than waiting two years to get it perfect before launch.
Watch and learn.