NCS Has Moved Out of Singtel Group Enterprise and Doubled Down on Digital Services

S. Soh

Summary Bullets:

  • NCS is investing in digital services, expanding its operations in China and Australia, and targeting key industry verticals.
  • NCS has gained greater autonomy moving out of Singtel Group Enterprise, to strengthen its regional capabilities in delivering digital solutions.

NCS, formerly National Computer Systems, was founded in 1981 to support the Singapore government’s initiatives related to IT implementation. It was acquired by Singtel in 1997, and it remains a key business within Singtel, delivering ICT solutions for enterprise customers both in Singapore and across Asia. According to Singtel, NCS has delivered revenue growth for seven years running. However, most of the business is generated in Singapore and especially within the public sector. NCS operated as a business unit within Singtel Group Enterprise for several years, but it has never been fully integrated with Singtel. The company has retained its brand name, and it has different capabilities than Singtel (e.g., consulting, business application services, AI, and automation) as well as a different business model (e.g., project-based, industry-focused, and bespoke solutions). Continue reading “NCS Has Moved Out of Singtel Group Enterprise and Doubled Down on Digital Services”

Mid-Band Spectrum Auctions Impact the 5G Landscape

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • Mid-band spectrum has been in high demand by mobile and wireline operators both to support 5G rollouts and to underpin private networks for industrial customers.
  • As recipients of CBRS spectrum are leveraging the technology for real-world deployments now, while the C-Band auction was recently completed on January 18, vendor activity and customer deployments will rapidly advance in 2021.

U.S. operators have been investing in and building out infrastructure for their 5G cellular networks for several years. They have already launched 5G services for both consumer use cases such as fixed wireless access (for broadband internet) and smartphone-based immersive gaming as well as for enterprise use cases such as high-volume or real-time IoT, AR/VR, and industrial private networks. They have primarily leveraged licensed spectrum bands in the high-band (e.g., mmWave bands from 24.25 to 29.5 GHz) and low-band (generally below 1 GHz) ranges. But operators are now vying to gain highly coveted spectrum in the mid-band, as it offers the best of both worlds, supporting high speeds and low latency, as well as the ability to cost-effectively spread networks out beyond dense urban settings. In the U.S., T-Mobile gained Sprint’s legacy 2.5GHz assets during the merger, and it is making the most of its ‘layer-cake’ approach to 5G which spans all three types of spectrum, but even the Un-carrier is bidding to get more mid-band spectrum to improve on this key differentiator. Continue reading “Mid-Band Spectrum Auctions Impact the 5G Landscape”

What’s New in the Global IIoT Services Market?

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • IoT services portfolios from mobile operators are expanding as enablers such as edge computing, 5G, and even COVID-19 related requirements for detection and amelioration provide momentum for new deployments and use cases.
  • GlobalData highlights below a number of recent announcements from leading operators regarding their edge alliances, application enablement and analytics enhancements, and vertical solutions.

Over the past six months, all Tier 1 mobile operators have added new capabilities or alliances, especially in the areas of multi-access edge computing, application enablement and analytics, and vertical solutions. The list below highlights some of the most relevant recent announcements impacting the IoT services portfolios of AT&T, Deutsche Telekom, Orange Business Services, Tata, Telstra, Telefonica, Verizon, and Vodafone. For detailed analysis of these operators’ portfolios, see the latest “Global Industrial IoT Services: Competitive Landscape Assessment.” Continue reading “What’s New in the Global IIoT Services Market?”

Telco SD-WAN in ASEAN: Significant Development, but What’s Next?

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • The SD-WAN market landscape in ASEAN has evolved. Many telcos have added SD-WAN as part of their enterprise ICT portfolio.
  • The ASEAN telcos could consider multi-vendor offerings and overlay-underlay integration as the next steps.

There are two types of telcos. The first type is telcos that are aware of the increase in SD-WAN demand and leverage the technology to drive their network services. This type often comes from a consumer heritage and is looking to expand into an adjacent market. In most cases, they are alternative providers. These telcos have accepted the fact that the MPLS market is on a downtrend and will continue to decline. They position SD-WAN as a value-add to complement their existing connectivity services. There are also cellular telcos with small/no revenue from the fixed-line services which see SD-WAN as a new market opportunity. These telcos have been aggressive in driving the market and leveraging their brand and connectivity advantages to differentiate against non-telco competitors. The second type is telcos that are also aware of the growing SD-WAN demand, but see it as a threat to their connectivity business. These are often the incumbent telcos with a large portion of revenue from legacy connectivity services. Most of them still believe that the declining MPLS revenue is because of competition, not due to lower market demand. These telcos also often do not have any SDN/NFV capabilities. Some of them offer the service quietly/selectively with a below-the-line marketing strategy. Continue reading “Telco SD-WAN in ASEAN: Significant Development, but What’s Next?”

Outlook for 5G-Enabled Enterprise Solutions in 2021: The Potential Telco Game Plans

S. Soh

Summary Bullets:

  • While 5G-enabled enterprise solutions offer new revenue streams for telecom operators, they need new capabilities to develop and sell the full solutions, not just the carriage component.
  • Telecom operators will look to partnerships and/or acquisitions to gain the necessary competence to help customers in key industry verticals to transform their business operations.

Telecommunications companies (telcos) are at a crossroads as they rollout 5G and looking at how to monetize this investment. While they can continue to focus on selling carriage services, with the saturation of mobile subscription and competitive pressure, the hope of increasing ARPU from 5G connectivity remains elusive. Instead, many telcos are looking to enterprise solutions as a way to open up new revenue streams, leveraging 5G’s unique capabilities around ultra-low latency, reliability, and significantly higher throughput. Some will go even further and set new performance parameters with 5G. This shift inevitably involves moving into new territories for the telcos, including IoT, data analytics, cloud services, cybersecurity, etc., and bringing these capabilities together to solve business problems and prove outcomes. Emerging 5G enterprise solutions also tend to target specific use cases across various industries (e.g., smart factory, port automation, and connected utilities). Most enterprises do not know how 5G can help to transform their business and they rely on their technology partners to advise and show them the possibilities. Continue reading “Outlook for 5G-Enabled Enterprise Solutions in 2021: The Potential Telco Game Plans”

TM ONE Leap Summit 2020: Accelerating Digital Transformation in Malaysia Through Expanded Capabilities

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • TM ONE has expanded its ICT portfolio and strengthened its professional service capabilities.
  • However, there is still a gap in its partner ecosystem compared to other providers.

TM ONE held its third LEAP Summit virtually in November 2020.  At the event, the provider shared various initiatives not only in enhancing the country network infrastructure in line with the government’s plan, but also in expanding its portfolio and capabilities as a digital transformation partner to Malaysian enterprises.  Its focus is on the future of work (e.g., robotics, automation AI), digital competency or skillset, agile working, and Industrial Revolution 4.0 (IR4.0).  The provider also shared several actual use cases and showcased its portfolio and capabilities in cloud, cybersecurity, 5G and IoT, and data analytics.  This post discusses TM ONE strengths and gaps in the market as well as recommendations for the provider and buyers in the country. Continue reading “TM ONE Leap Summit 2020: Accelerating Digital Transformation in Malaysia Through Expanded Capabilities”

Vodafone Americas Offers Unique Proposition for MNCs, Including U.S. Companies

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • Vodafone Americas is seeing traction with U.S. companies with global voice and data connectivity requirements as well as global companies that need to communicate in the U.S.
  • Ironically, the mobile-first operator is seeing opportunities to offer these MNCs value-added services such as IoT, UC, and cloud, without having or needing its own mobile footprint in the U.S.

Vodafone Americas offers MNCs in the U.S., Canada, and South America a unique value proposition that allows the operator to draw customers, even among large, well-known U.S.-headquartered enterprises, and service them globally.  In the U.S., it operates out of offices in New York, Denver, and San Francisco.  It also has an IoT Innovation Lab in San Francisco.  For global companies that require U.S. coverage as part of their footprint, Vodafone has established a series of roaming capabilities.  While it is not necessarily the lowest-cost provider of these connections, its extensive non-U.S. mobile footprint provides MNCs with the ability to contract with a single provider, which may bring not only deeper discounts but also the convenience factor of having a single company from which to buy connectivity, with visibility and support via consistent platforms.  Vodafone Americas is successfully offering many of these approximately 500 companies IoT solutions as well as other strategic services such as cloud, cybersecurity, and unified communications, which also do not depend on the operator having its own U.S. footprint for mobile access.  The operator also has some U.S. wireline assets, including 24 PoPs in ‘NFL cities,’ but remains reliant on operator partners for last-mile access. Continue reading “Vodafone Americas Offers Unique Proposition for MNCs, Including U.S. Companies”

So We Thought the CBRS Auction Was Big; Here Comes C-Band

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • The C-band consists of 500 megahertz of mid-band spectrum between 3.7 and 4.2 GHz. The FCC will be auctioning off this spectrum beginning in December 2020.
  • This auction is especially important as mobile operators in the U.S. need mid-band spectrum to flesh out their 5G networks and consolidate their positioning to both consumers and enterprises.

The C-band consists of 500 megahertz of mid-band spectrum between 3.7 and 4.2 GHz. The FCC will be auctioning off this spectrum beginning in December 2020. Investment firms are betting that this auction will generate $25 to $35 billion, a significantly larger amount than the $4.6 billion that the CBRS auction brought in this past August.

Why Is This Important?

Mobile operators in the U.S. need mid-band spectrum to flesh out their 5G networks. The 5G networks of AT&T and Verizon are dominated by two spectrum types: millimeter wave (mmWave) spectrum, which has been rolled out in dense urban locations but does not propagate cost-effectively to rural areas; and low-band spectrum, which has been rolled out much more broadly throughout the country but has not achieved the kinds of speed and latency enhancements required to excite enterprises and developers looking to power new innovative use cases. T-Mobile inherited 2.5 GHz mid-band spectrum holdings from Sprint as part of the merger and has been using it to offer what the operator calls its ‘layer cake’ approach of low-, mid-, and high-band spectrum, designed to meet the needs of different target segments and use cases. Continue reading “So We Thought the CBRS Auction Was Big; Here Comes C-Band”

5G Updates in ASEAN – Q3 2020: Mixed Developments, but Still a Solid Growth Forecast

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • There have been mixed 5G developments in the region. While the 5G race is heating up in the Philippines, Thailand, and Singapore, the launch is still unclear for Indonesia and Malaysia.
  • 5G subscribers are expected to grow from 0.2 million in 2020 to 127 million and account for 17% of the total mobile subscribers in 2025.

Key Announcements

July 2020 – Philippine PLDT/Smart 5G Goes Live: The incumbent launched its 5G services in key business districts in Metro Manila about one year after its rival, Globe. While PLDT may have lost some very early opportunity, the launch is timely in the Philippines considering the ecosystem and market readiness. The launch will also increase the competition and hence drive the adoption of 5G in the country. PLDT is also leveraging its strength in the enterprise segment to stay ahead of competitors. It has integrated the technology in its enterprise portfolio and is collaborating with various industry players to co-develop 5G use cases, such as partnerships with TV5 to modernize news operations and with Ateneo de Manila University on 5G smart campus. Continue reading “5G Updates in ASEAN – Q3 2020: Mixed Developments, but Still a Solid Growth Forecast”

Private 5G Spectrum Applications in Germany Offer Clues on Enterprise Demand – or Do They?

J. Marcus

Summary Bullets:

  • Private 5G networks using unlicensed spectrum could play a major role in the digital transformation of business operations, especially within industrial sectors. Having opened up the market, German regulator Bundesnetzagentur (BNetzA) has already received 78 applications, all but four of which have been assigned.
  • A published list of private spectrum buyers is intended to let enterprises know who else has been approved, in order to avoid interference from overlapping use of radio frequencies in local deployments. So far, it is mostly network consulting and engineering specialists along with research and educational institutions that have gone public with their private spectrum applications.

In Who’s Winning the Wireless Private Network Race?,” Kathryn Weldon took a look at the various ecosystem stakeholders in private 4G and 5G networks and their various strengths, incentives, and abilities to capitalize on the market opportunity (particularly in the U.S., where private CBRS spectrum was recently auctioned). In this blog, we take a look at Germany, a regional market where global network infrastructure vendors expect early demand and where a list of entities assigned unlicensed 5G spectrum in the 3.7-to-3.8 GHz frequency band has just been published. Continue reading “Private 5G Spectrum Applications in Germany Offer Clues on Enterprise Demand – or Do They?”