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5G rollout, IoT deployments signal bright future for Indian telecom sector

2022 will be a turning point for the Indian telecom industry. It has surpassed its most testing and challenging times, and now it is all set to grow consistently. The industry will benefit from the recent telecom reform program announced by the government and the rapid digitization across the sectors. With a promising future ahead, some of the technology trends will define the Indian telecom industry in 2022.

In 2022, we will see a lot of action in India’s 5G testing, network upgradation, and 5G rollouts. 5G auctions are expected to occur in the first half of 2022, which is likely to result in the services being launched in some urban metros by the end of this year. 5G will radically change the future course of the telecommunication companies in India. This technology allows telecom services companies to transform from passive connectivity providers to active ICT service providers. Some of its inherent features like ultra-low latency, higher speed, more reliability, and ability to do network slicing open the door for telecom operators to offer new services, do network optimization and enhance customer experience.

AI and big data
Telecommunications companies continuously gather data from mobile devices, applications, and other connected devices daily. AI provides an opportunity for telecom service providers to glean actionable business insights from the vast volumes of data it gathers every day. Most telecom service providers have already started using AI tools in virtual assistants and chatbots to improve customer services and satisfaction. From this year onwards, Frost & Sullivan expects telecom service providers in India to leverage AI in other aspects like network optimization, automation, detecting fraudulent activities, exploring new monetization opportunities, and improving customer exercise.

Cloud platforms
There is a rapid shift in the technology world toward as-a-service business models in all areas. This technology trend will immensely benefit telecom service providers and the telecom industry. It can help telecom service providers become cloud service providers by introducing new cloud-based services. It also provides them with the opportunity to leverage it to improve their internal efficiencies, reduce the cost of operations, and adjust it to market demands. These platforms offer telecoms economies of scale, scalability, and cost-effectiveness.

IoT deployments and use cases are rapidly gaining steam across consumer and commercial applications in India. While wearables and smart homes are pushing consumer IoT, remote monitoring, vehicle tracking, energy/water metering, and many agriculture use cases are driving commercial IoT. Our analysis indicates a lot of momentum in industrial IoT in automation and predictive maintenance. Over and above these opportunities, there is a huge potential for IoT deployment in smart cities, in applications like traffic management, digital signage, environment monitoring, waste management, etc. All these growth areas provide immense opportunities for telecom companies. Their success will depend on how effectively they partner with other technology companies in the IoT ecosystem and drive value. IoT can also be leveraged by telecom companies internally in many ways, like remotely monitoring base stations, data centers, etc., and improving network operations.

Managed security services
Managed security service (MSS) is becoming an increasingly popular and a great business opportunity for telecom service providers (TSP). Some of the low-hanging fruits in MSS space for TSP include managed firewalls, managed VPN, remote security monitoring, proactively reporting faults and incidents, virus and spam protection. Telecom operators inherently have assets like a secure network, 24/7 operations center, device, and application monitoring tools and capabilities related to planning, building, and running a network. They are required to offer and operate managed security services successfully. TSP needs to put together the right strategy, develop a partner ecosystem, and enhance their internal asset & incident management tools and processes to capitalize on this opportunity.

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