2015 predictions for mobile operators: Current Analysis

Current Analysis identifies the trending consumer services topic areas that will impact both European and US fixed and wireless mobile operators in 2015.

The following are the 2015 predictions for mobile operators :

Debate over net neutrality far from over

The debate over net neutrality shows no signs of letting up, meaning that the controversial regulatory and legal battles will continue for the foreseeable future. In Europe, where the mobile market is struggling to retain value, carriers will increasingly look to offer bundles of fixed and mobile services, while in the US mobile carriers will continue engaging in relentless price competition around data access, but will also seek to build customer loyalty and keep rivals from poaching their subscribers.

Mobile Phone-userNo end in sight for price war in the US

US mobile operators spent 2014 launching retaliatory data pricing salvos against one another, and the barrage will continue into 2015. With the four national operators deploying robust LTE footprints, opportunities for service differentiation are growing scarcer. The greatest price erosion ever in the industry was experienced during Q3 2014.

M&A activity set to continue

US merger and acquisition activity was largely relegated to small acquisitions in 2014. The trend will likely continue as a growing number of small wireless operators struggle to compete against nationwide carriers that have better scale and are engaged in an aggressive price war.

OTT and operators – from foes to friends?

The impact of OTT services grew during 2014, and carriers are finding it increasingly difficult to compete against OTT messaging apps. Many, such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, are garnering significant scale and threaten carrier relationships with their own customers. This scenario will encourage the growth of partnerships between carriers and OTT players during 2015, with the OTT providers benefitting from the carriers’ customer relationships.

WiFi calling on the rise as market evolves

Meanwhile, WiFi has become a critical component of some carriers’ business models as they use the technology to offload traffic from their congested networks. However, WiFi’s availability is also opening the door to new competitors using unlicensed spectrum to challenge carriers’ services that are delivered over licensed airwaves. WiFi’s market impact will evolve during 2015 on multiple fronts, including a broader adoption of WiFi calling.

Source: Current Analysis

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