man looking concerned

Navigating Telecom Industry Change: What to Expect (and Tips From the Pros)

2020 was a year of redefinition in telecom. While the industry has always been known for its dynamic nature, the sudden shift to remote work during the pandemic accelerated many of the changes that were already influencing the ways businesses use technology.

Dealing with telecom industry change requires a shift in mindset – and an understanding of the technologies most closely tied to the current evolution of the telecom industry.

The Immediate Future of Telecom

There are several key technologies that have come to the forefront as “must watch” for those invested in staying up to speed on industry developments. While many of these trends were already on the rise prior to 2020, the need to keep remote workers and the public connected while apart has increased their importance.

Here’s what we expect to drive telecom industry change in the near future:

AI (Artificial Intelligence)

The many applications of AI became clear over the course of 2020 and into 2021. A recent study found 58.8% of businesses have either already deployed AI or are in the process of doing so1 – with only 3.33% expressing no interest in implementing the technology.

AI is gaining momentum, and it’s expected to help optimize a number of different business operations in the near future:

  • Natural language processing, enhancing the effectiveness of chatbots and virtual assistants to help businesses improve the customer experience
  • AI hardware, which modifies systems to improve tasks like deep learning – ultimately enhancing performance and reducing costs

Blockchain

Even though blockchain technologies are still in somewhat of their nascent stages – and skepticism about their use abounds – researchers are looking into how blockchain will affect all types of industries, including telecom. Deloitte reports2 that communication services providers (CSPs) stand to benefit from blockchain in a few ways, including through process efficiency gains across their core management systems which will result in reduced costs. Blockchain also has the potential to reduce losses as a result of fraud. From “identity as a service” to 5G enablement, industry leaders are keeping blockchain on their radar for future innovations.

5G

We’re seeing major improvements in 5G technology – coverage is expanding, and 5G-enabled devices are gradually declining in cost. With organizations planning for remote and hybrid work environments to be the norm for the long term, 5G helps facilitate a number of business activities:

  • Improved video conferencing capabilities as a result of speeds 10 to 100 times greater2 than those possible with 4G
  • Enhanced telemedicine capabilities, making it more effective for healthcare providers to offer virtual care in an era when this option is still in high demand

IoT (Internet of Things)

The number of live smart devices in 2021 has reached 46 billion – up from 35 billion in 2020.3 IoT devices are expected to play a key role across multiple industries – notably healthcare, manufacturing, and retail, among others. Here are some important numbers to note as we examine the impact of IoT on telecom industry change:

  • 87% of businesses say changes they’ve made to their core strategy due to IoT have been beneficial.
  • 73% of companies that have adopted IoT technology for three or more years have seen a significant return on investment.

Digital Workspace

As of the end of 2020, there were 2.7 billion deskless employees – or 80% of the total global workforce.4 There’s been a big push toward giving these deskless workers technologies to help them work more efficiently and productively. This could include:

  • Cloud-based voice solutions 
  • Collaboration platforms
  • Cloud data storage
  • SD-WAN for complex network management

3 Tips for Coping With Telecom Industry Change

So you’re aware of what’s coming down the technology pike – now what? The evolution of the telecom industry is continuous, and there are three ways to successfully navigate any transition that’s ahead.

Stay Informed

You’re already doing a great job with step one by reading this blog! Because of the perpetually changing nature of the telecom industry, though, periodic or passive checking in isn’t going to keep you up to date on every development that could impact your business.

Proactively follow industry thought leaders and trusted sources that pay attention to and share information on the latest in telecom. Our blog, for instance, is a great read, but following us on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter or subscribing to our newsletter are even better ways to ensure the news gets delivered straight to you.

Industry publications like CIO online, TechRadar, CNET, and many others will also help you keep your ear to the ground on the latest in business technology.

Be Cautious

Keeping up with telecom industry change doesn’t mean being an early provider of every emerging technology you read about. We don’t mean you should stay trapped in an analysis/paralysis cycle and never take action, but it’s important to show a healthy amount of skepticism and do your due diligence before diving into an investment in new technology.

Any decisions you make on adopting (or selling, reselling, or developing) anything trending in telecom should be data-driven. Are there models of success you can refer to? What statistics are available on how widely the technology has proliferated? Asking key questions up front can save you from losses down the road.

Be Agile

Agility is essential in the telecom industry. As we all saw in 2020, sudden change requires rapid, intelligent pivoting. So while it’s important to be cautious, it’s equally important to act once you’ve collected the information you need to make a smart investment – and stay one step ahead of your competitors.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help

Telecom industry change is inevitable – and keeping up with marketing on top of managing the transitions themselves can be overwhelming to handle on your own.

Mojenta has been in the telecom marketing game for well over a decade, and we’ve powered the growth of nearly 300 B2B technology companies through more industry changes than we can count. If you need an experienced partner to support your marketing efforts so you can focus on your core business, you’re in the right place. Reach out to us to talk about how we can help.

Sources:

  1. https://www.thefastmode.com/technology-and-solution-trends/18860-2021-to-finally-be-the-year-that-ai-blooms-in-telecoms-says-comarch-industry-survey
  2. https://www2.deloitte.com/content/dam/Deloitte/za/Documents/technology-media-telecommunications/za_TMT_Blockchain_TelCo.pdf 
  3. https://www.cnet.com/tech/mobile/5g-starts-to-live-up-to-the-hype-in-2021-for-real/
  4. https://www.saftbatteries.com/energizing-iot/how-iot-world-shaping-2021-and-what-trends-will-influence-future-iot-infographic
  5. https://workspace365.net/en/8-digital-workspace-trends-for-2021/

Ready to get started? Contact us today.