Dataxis has recently concluded the inaugural edition of Next Mobile Europe, covering 30 speakers across the European mobile industry. The event served as a forum for industry leaders to delve into commercial strategies, technical milestones, upcoming challenges, and market innovations shaping the mobile landscape in Europe.
- Competition from New Entrants
The European mobile market, already comprised of 80+ active groups operating networks across 185 national entities, anticipates further fragmentation with successive waves of new entrants. These newcomers, ranging from energy companies to niche service providers, leverage agile structures to offer innovative connectivity solutions. Legacy operators face challenges in swiftly adapting to new business opportunities, allowing agile newcomers to disrupt and establish market presence.
- Rise of Digital-Only Mobile Brands
Digital-native mobile brands leveraging eSIM technology are entering the market with minimal sales and logistics costs. While these brands aim to reduce cost structures and cater to online audiences, physical retail presence remains crucial in certain conservative markets.
- Impact of 5G
Despite the slow uptake of 5G plans among consumers in Europe, the technology holds promise for enhanced connectivity, especially in rural areas where satellite operators can complement ground infrastructures. Initiatives for 5G private networks are emerging, particularly in collaborations within industries such as media and entertainment, hinting at evolving business cases.
- Diversification of Telco Services
Traditional mobile network operators face challenges from disruptors like tech giants (e.g., WhatsApp, Google, SpaceX) and digital platforms. However, opportunities arise for partnerships as these entities seek superior connectivity. Telcos like A1 aim to evolve into service aggregators, emphasizing customer service and expanding their portfolios to retain customer loyalty.
Expanding Revenue Streams and Partnerships
Convergent Services: Telcos witness lower churn rates and higher customer loyalty through bundled services, leading to a focus on service expansion to improve customer experience metrics.
Partnerships: Collaborations with digital platforms, entertainment apps, and real-life experiences (e.g., exclusive events) drive revenue growth and foster long-term relationships with customers.
International Connectivity: Operators explore wholesale services and partnerships to offer international connectivity capabilities, catering to avid travelers and creating adjacent services like exclusive travel insurance.
Future Prospects in Mobile Operators
European mobile operators, serving over 820 million SIM cards for a population of 600 million (excluding Russia), operate in a mature market. However, the industry eyes innovations and partnerships across adjacent industries to explore new growth avenues and expand product portfolios, Ophelie Boucaud, Senior Analyst at Dataxis, said in a report.
The mobile operator landscape transcends mere connectivity, aiming for continuous evolution and investments in higher capacity to unlock novel business opportunities and collaborations with adjacent industries, ensuring sustained growth in Europe’s advanced mobile market.