Networking company Cisco has made several announcements related to its engagement with telecom operators at the Mobile World Congress (MWC 2018).
Cisco said Saudi Telecom (STC), SFR, Telenor and Reliance Jio are the telecom operators who are looking for more engagements with the US-based technology company. These new deals do not reflect 5G business strategy announced earlier by Cisco.
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The technology deals announced – though with existing clients — by Cisco indicate that the enterprise networking company will be playing an active role in the telecom infrastructure market in coming years.
Tech companies such as Nokia, Ericsson, Huawei and ZTE are already feeling the heat in the mobile technology market due to reduction in Capex by telecom operators.
GSMA says slowing unique subscriber growth, regulatory issues and competition continue to put pressure on operators’ mobile revenues. Global telecom operator revenue will grow by around 1 percent between 2017 and 2020 (CAGR) and will roughly stabilise beyond 2020 at $1.1 trillion.
This lower revenue growth indicates that telecom operators will cagey about their Capex plans in networks. GSMA says mobile operators will invest $0.5 trillion worldwide in mobile Capex, excluding spectrum acquisitions, between 2018 and 2020.
Saudi Telecom (STC) signed a 3-year managed services deal with Cisco to transform STC’s core network and operations, and prepare for digital transformation.
Cisco will set up a Network Operating Center (NOC) to enable STC to launch new services, improve customer experiences and enhance network agility and performance.
“This contract with Cisco has been structured to take our digital operations to the next level through the introduction of tools, processes and, on developing local calibers across multiple technology domains to meet the needs of the business,” Nasser Alnasser, senior vice president for Technology and Operations at STC, said.
The new contract covers STC’s core MPLS, which carries all of the service provider’s core and critical services, in addition to WiFi and Evolved Packet core networks, as well as the IT Enterprise and Data Center core business.
SFR, a subsidiary of the Altice Group, is deploying Cisco Network Services Orchestrator (NSO) to enhance the automation, agility and reliability of its network, while accelerating network services change management with automated on-demand services provisioning.
Cisco NSO enables SFR to simplify the lifecycle management for its services, automating core functions across physical and virtualized networks for both existing and new customers. This enables faster innovation and increases customer satisfaction by speeding time-to-market for new managed services like SD-WAN, and Application-driven, on demand services.
“Utilizing Cisco’s network automation software allows us to bring a common API for our services across different networks in a simplified manner,” said Christophe Delaye, CTIO, SFR.
Telenor and Cisco signed a Joint Purpose Agreement (JPA) to collaborate on enhancing end customer experiences with data analysis, IoT, Smart City, and security solutions.
The effort aims to accelerate Telenor’s transformation and digitization drive, and enhance user experiences for Telenor customers.
Cisco will work with Telenor on its roadmap to accelerate digital transformation, drive new revenue streams, increase operational excellence and enable the most secure customer experiences.
“Digitization of societies requires new ways of working and new partnerships,” said Ruza Sabanovic, chief technology officer, Telenor Group.
Telenor will utilize Cisco’s data platform, Cisco Kinetic, to extract, compute, and move data from connected things to various applications – exploring potential business benefits.
Reliance Jio and Cisco Jio are working together to leverage the power of multi-access edge computing to optimize and enhance video experience over the network by developing a mobile content delivery network (CDN).
“Reliance Jio is always about innovation and disruption, and multi-access edge computing enables a new way to deliver a broad range of media and mission critical services with enhanced customer experience with improved network efficiency,” said Mathew Oommen, president, Reliance Jio.