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Tech & Business Trends 2015: 10 Points for Service Providers

Sanjay Kaul, Managing Director, Service Provider, Cisco India & SAARC

The article appeared in Voice&Data

In 2014, we celebrated the 25th anniversary of the World Wide Web, the worldwide online population crossed the 3 billion mark and the government launched the Digital India program. These are important milestones when we consider how technology has impacted our lives and what we can expect in 2015.

We are going through unprecedented change in the industry. We believe India is reaching an inflection point in technology adoption with social, mobile, cloud and analytics driving digital disruption in the country. Today 81 percent of India’s population already has access to a mobile phone and over the next three years, India will add, on an average, 5 mn Internet users and 8.3 mn networked devices every month.

Digitization will change the way industries such as banking, retail and manufacturing operate today. Service providers will play an increasingly important role in the digital disruption as we move rapidly toward a mobile and cloud-based world. The world has truly gone mobile, forever altering customer expectations and the rise in cloud computing is dramatically transforming telecom infrastructures.

Service providers are looking to improve their top lines, reduce their spending and move with speed and agility in deploying new services. As India accelerates its journey towards becoming a digital economy, below are 10 technology trends to watch out for in 2015.

Big Data Analytics

Big Data Analytics: Mining structured and unstructured data from a variety of sources to draw intelligence and deliver it in real time to enable fast decision making will become increasingly critical. Service providers in India are seeing an unprecedented rise in volume of analytics information (big data) due to increasing use of smartphones, roll out of high speed data networks and rise of social media.

Consumerization of Enterprises

Consumerization of Enterprises: The pervasive use of social media and mobile devices will drive the need for infrastructure and services that enable greater user access, control and interaction. Enterprises are capitalizing on the consumerization of IT and proliferation of mobile devices by developing applications aimed at improving employee productivity and customer satisfaction.

Computing Everywhere

Computing Everywhere: As mobile devices continue to proliferate, an increased emphasis on serving the needs of the mobile user in diverse contexts and environments, as opposed to focusing on devices alone.  Mobile and wearable devices are now part of an expanded computing environment that includes such things as consumer electronics and connected screens in the workplace and public space. Increasingly, it’s the overall environment that will need to adapt to the requirements of the mobile user. This will continue to raise significant management challenges for IT organizations as they lose control of user endpoint devices. It will also require increased attention to user experience design.

Network Function Virtualization

Network Function Virtualization (NFV): NFV is no less than a paradigm shift that will transform service providers’ networks from a pre-defined set of physical infrastructure components to a set of modular software building blocks. These building blocks can be created, combined and shuffled at will, creating new network services, turning today’s static networks into dynamic, elastic network clouds. High network equipment cost and operational complexity have hampered service providers in their battle against more nimble over-the-top (OTT) competitors, who have set a new bar in terms of customer expectations for quick delivery of new services. The adoption of NFV will help service providers meet this challenge. It will enable service providers to move from multiple proprietary devices to commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) servers, shift from physical network installation and configurations to remote, automated software-based processes, and provide automated elasticity and scaling.

Customer Experience

Customer Experience: As digital communication channels are exploding and mobile devices get smarter, consumer expectations are changing drastically. Consumers expect consistent, proactive, personalized service across a growing number of channels, resulting in a positive, pain-free customer experience. Customer experience is overtaking price and product as the key service provider brand differentiator. In data business one-size-fits all customer experience simply won’t suffice. Service providers shall transform their service orchestration architectures to enable consistencies and efficiencies that serve individual needs.

Data Security

Data Security: As mobility and BYOD trends increase, there will be a greater need for solutions that enable mobility while ensuring adequate security. Security needs to be flexible, robust and application aware to provide the proper security at the proper time.

Unified Communication and Cloud

Unified Communication and Cloud: Customers will increasingly demand real-time communication services to move from voice to data to cloud seamlessly while using a consistent user interface. Any time, anywhere any device.

More Demand for Cloud

More Demand for Cloud: Multi-cloud environments will increasingly be sought by companies as they look to improve business with new online services that foster growth while reducing costs, minimizing risks, and increasing agility.

OTT Revenue Stream

Over the top revenue stream: Data monetization through analytics and enterprise architectures that are designed to be CAPEX and OPEX efficient will provide increased revenue opportunities for enterprises.

Internet of Things

Internet of Things: As M2M protocols gain traction, there will be communication solutions that even out data utilization and loads across peak and non-peak times and improve overall IT efficiency.The next phase of the web is the Internet of Everything which is the intelligent connection of people, processes, data, and things. As India embarks on its digital journey, 2015 will bea major tipping point for the Internet of Everything.

Looking at how far we’ve come today in technology, we’re excited to envision the possibilities of where we’ll go in 2015.

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