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Broadband

Comverse Gets Social at MWC2013

February 28, 2013

Comverse showed me their Share solution at Mobile World Congress 2013 which allows carriers to deliver a Facebook app giving the user a portal into their subscriber account. Once you enter the app, you are prompted to enter a phone number and are subsequently sent a text message allowing you to get a code which enables authentication.

At this point you can check your account balance, send notes to customer care and more. The operator benefits as well because they can mine the user likes and preferences allowing them to determine for example if they may be a candidate for a bundle or special offering.

Smith Micro Extends MDM Standard to Chipset Level

February 28, 2013

Smith Micro's main message at Mobile World Congress 2013 was that wirelss broadband connectivity is going to become easier. Carla Fitzgerald, VP Marketing Wireless & Mobility explained how the company has worked with chipset vendors to get its QuickLink MBIM Middleware installed at the chip level in various computer systems.

She said, "Connectivity originally started as an application where the user was once forced to be an IT administrator." She continued, "But now with standards like MBIM and Smith Micro working with chipset vendors, connectivity will be automatic regardless of operating system."

The benfits for users will be the ability to have backward and forward compatability across not only operating system versions but operating systems as well meaning you could take a USB stick modem and seamlessly have it work regardless of your system. Currently the middleware supports just about anything you would want to use such as Windows 7, Vista, XP, Mac OSX and Linux.

Teoco Shows Predictive Geotargeting at MWC2013

February 27, 2013

At Mobile World Congress 2013 Teoco explained how they have carved out a niche in the market focusing on BSS and OSS analytics while taking advantage of geolocation to ensure operators not only serve their customer with greater profitability, they can also capture new revenue models.

The Virginia-based company has provided carrier solutions in the past such as service assurance such as capacity planning, managing network congestion, etc. They also provide network optimization like suggesting what direction a tower should tilt. Finally, margin assurance is a big area of focus - which in one case they say saved a customer half a billion dollars in five years through a variety of analytics projects such as reducing access charges, modifying contracts with suppliers, fixing uneven roaming scenarios, tower location analysis, network routing and other projects.

Mobidia Tackles Bill Shock at MWC2013

February 27, 2013

 

Chris Hill (pictured) the VP of Marketing at Mobidia was euphoric in telling me about the growth of the company's new app My Data Manager which has had 3.5 million downloads in the past 12 months. As bill shock becomes a larger problem which is amplified by the speed of 4G networks, users - especially when roaming, are literally a movie away from being hundreds of dollars above their typical monthly costs if they aren't careful.

The app runs in the background on iOS and Android and monitors app usage and cellular usage anonymously sending data back to the company if the user agrees to it. To date, over one million people have signed up to allow their data to be tracked meaning Mobidia has some incredible information about mobile use trends.

Vantrix Optimizes Media Delivery at MWC2013

February 26, 2013

As audio and video traffic over wireless networks has grown exponentially, operators around the world have struggled to deal with managing the challenge. Enter Vantrix who focuses on bandwidth management and more specifically media optimization according to company execs execs at Mobile World Congress 2013 in Barcelona.

 

The company showed off its solution running on the QuickFire Networks T-Video line - an offering which deals with ever-more complex video by attacking the problem with a combination of hardware and software. Using Intel 2.3GHz Core i7 processors the T-Video V1100 reduces the footprint of video transcoding solutions by a factor of five using 44 cores per rack unit. As H.265 video becomes prevalent, Mark Hopper, the VP of Product Line Management (pictured) for the company says video systems will have to increase their footprint size by 20-30x to keep up with video which has ten times the complexity factor - referring to the differences between H.265 and H.264 video.

Ciena Launches New Services Play

February 25, 2013

Ciena has some exciting news when it comes to the world of service provider networks. We know the company as an equipment provider which has had years in the business but now they have branched out from not only upgrading networks but businesses. Chuck Kaplan VP Industry Marketing (pictured above) spent some time with me at Mobile World Congress 2013 explaining how his company has spent years helping customers not just spend money on their solutions but make it as well through a new consulting initiative.

The first step in the process is to redefine carrier services for a new world where data usage has tremendous spikes which are caused by things like cloud service utilization.

Volubill Updates Charging and Policy Solutions at MWC2013

February 25, 2013

Volubill the "converged charging and policy" company brought their solutions up to date at Mobile World Congress 2013 with the introduction of 4G LTE solutions. One of the interesting differentiators the company provides is allowing carriers to personalize virtually anything. For example, customer Orange Madagascar recently launched 18 new packages and will soon launch another 14. Each took 15 minutes to configure, test and deploy.

Is Apple Too Sexy for MWC?

February 15, 2013


In deciding not to exhibit at the Macworld events, CES and MWC, Apple has shown the world that it doesn’t need others to be successful. It can control the conversation far better when it holds its own press conferences which are invitation-only by design.

While this philosophy was very successful for a number of years, what Apple didn’t count on was the innovation gap between its products and the rest of the market closing to the point where a large-screen Android smartphone is actually preferable by the masses to the company’s iOS based phone offerings.

In other words – the “Apple attitude” we’re too sexy for your trade show was a great marketing concept for a number of years but now it seems like a bad choice.

Thoughts on Alcatel-Lucent

February 8, 2013

One of the greatest challenges incumbent companies face is the ambivalence and corporate politics incumbency breeds and it only gets worse in what we call the age of acceleration where competitors arise faster and technologies shift more quickly than ever. Nortel, NSN and Alcatel-Lucent are all companies who enjoyed decades of leadership in the carrier market and in the process decided to provide generous benefits for their workers which would eventually help make them uncompetitive.

There is more to it - in the late nineties, Lucent acquired companies so quickly that its workers didn't know exactly who did what. Nortel too made a great deal of acquisitions.

Video is the Recurring Star

January 29, 2013

There is an insatiable demand for content of the video variety. It is so great in fact that sports networks like ESPN are getting an outsized portion of your cable bill. The network in fact gets more than $5 per subscriber per month regardless of whether you ever watch their networks. Cable and IPTV companies for their part are in quite a pickle as more subscribers drop their service altogether for OTT competition.

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