We live in a burgeoning digital economy, where customers – whether consumer or enterprise – desire easy access to digital services. Today these customers most often buy what they need from digital marketplaces, like Google Play or Apple’s App Store. The emergence of smart cities and connected car ecosystems also point to a future in which our digital economy comprises larger, even more complex services.

“OPERATORS RECOGNISE THAT SOFTWARE-DEFINED NETWORKS MUST ALSO BRING AGILITY
AND EFFICIENCY TO BUSINESS FUNCTIONS SUCH AS SERVICE CREATION AND CUSTOMER MANAGEMENT.”

The biggest digital and cloud companies in the world are considering their role in this rapidly growing economy, and the same should be true of telco operators. Communications service providers (CSPs) need a digital services strategy both for competitive survival and to exploit new business opportunities.

Fortunately for operators, the telco network offers certain competitive advantages over non-telco players and helps clarify a role for traditional telco businesses in the digital economy. The network, after all, offers unparalleled insight into customers’ digital lives, which could position operators at the centre of emerging digital service value chains.
These types of business propositions drive operator interest in network functions virtualisation (NFV). Though the technology has gained considerable hype for its promise to improve operational costs and limit infrastructure management, operators recognise that software-defined networks must also bring agility and efficiency to business functions such as service creation and customer management.

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