Next Generation Communications Blog

Restoration Hardware's E-commerce Fighting Formula

A Tasteful Blend of Starbucks and Apple Retail Experiences designed to make customers fall in loveApple has the most valuable retail real...

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Thoughts on ThinkGeek Customer Service

I’m on the phone with ThinkGeek because I purchased something which they shipped incorrectly. I tried email and didn’t get a...

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The Interworking Function (IWF) part of the Diameter Signaling Controller (DSC) now takes center stage

Diameter Signaling Controllers (DSCs) are the general term used to describe products that enable load balancing and scaling of Diameter signaling...

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New T-Mobile Pay as You Go LTE Pricing Changes Everything

Until recently, if you wanted a real data plan on a major carrier while using your cell phone, you were forced...

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How Sony May be Fighting to Unleak its Information

The recent attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment is about as scary as it gets as emails which insulted the company’s hired talent...

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4 Tips for the Busy Executive

I have a couple of prospective clients that keep delaying projects. One really wants to do the project but the people...

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Opening up the skies with LTE Air-to-Ground

By: Thierry Sens, Marketing Director Transportation Segment, Alcatel-Lucent

(Note:  Originally posted on Alcatel-Lucent corporate blog)

“Ladies and gentlemen, the fasten seat belt sign has now been turned on. Please ensure your mobile devices are switched off for the full duration of the flight” It is the announcement that many passengers dread as they hurry to finish up one more e-mail, or send one final text or tweet, before the start of a flight and a few hours of absence from the connected world.

But from the end of 2016 this is set to change in Europe. Inmarsat announced on November 20 that it has signed a contract with Alcatel-Lucent to develop Long-Term Evolution (LTE) air-to-ground technology, which will be delivered in partnership with service providers and airlines in 30 European countries. Alcatel-Lucent will supply the ground LTE radio infrastructure, which consists of antennas situated 100 km apart. The system is capable of providing download speeds of up to 75 mbps to planes using 2x15 MHz FDD licenses which Inmarsat owns in the Mobile Satellite Service (MSS) S-band. This makes it not only the world’s fastest airborne broadband service, but a pioneer of future in-flight services for passengers and airline operations.

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Improve Visibility into Operations Using Business Activity Monitoring Tools

By Tracey Schelmetic

It's a challenge every business faces eventually: keeping your customers during an economic downturn. You may not have the marketing budget to prospect for more customers, and you may not have the budget to launch new, flashy product lines, but you have no choice about one thing: you need to keep the customers you have. In other words, you need to figure out how to prevent churn, oftentimes with fewer human and technology resources than you had just a few months ago.

So what advantage is it that the companies who manage to do just this have over the companies that don't? Best-in-class performance, according to a white paper from Aberdeen Group.

Alcatel-Lucent: Market 'More than Ready' for Multi-screen Services

By Susan Campbell

Consumers today are carrying multiple devices and service providers need to develop solutions that enable rich content delivery and applications across all of those devices if they hope to be able to effectively compete in this market. This is especially true as the line between traditional broadcast TV and online multimedia content is quickly blurring.

Today’s consumer wants to be able to watch TV and video content without having to be tied to a fixed program schedule or the home television. Consumers are rapidly adopting more flexible viewing experiences that include connected and mobile devices, such as tablets, smartphones, PCs, netbooks and more.

Knowing the Value of Your Network Capabilities


By Tracey Schelmetic

Apps. We're crazy for them, much to the gratification of those who build them and those who sell them.

As a growing number of network providers are investing to speed the delivery of new services to an increasingly more demanding consumer and enterprise market, many of these companies are finding value in supporting the delivery of third-party applications. With the success of Apple's App Store, consumers are demanding more and better apps, and the network companies are very happy to provide them. Mobile network providers serve over two billion subscribers collectively — nearly half of the global mobile subscriber base, and that number is expected to go nowhere but up. Network companies are eager to increase their time-to-market, and spur innovation, but competition is fierce and the terrain is new: companies need to truly understand what the best approach to take in application development is.



There are a lot of options, and most network providers differ from one another greatly in their approaches to developing and marketing apps: some providers are investing heavily in recruitment and training of developers; some are tapping into existing developer communities; some appear to be courting the media’s attention, whereas others are holding closed beta tests of their application enablement platforms.


How Smart Metering Technology Can Help Enterprises Lower Energy Consumption

By Beecher Tuttle

In today's volatile economic times, enterprises and SMBs of every size and stature are looking to lower operating costs to improve their bottom line. To achieve this goal, a growing number of companies have made the decision to embrace green energy solutions, which can help eliminate the incredible amount of power that is wasted each year in the course of delivering electricity through a traditional grid. These cost-saving initiatives are also being adopted by companies that are looking to become more eco-friendly.

According to a recent CIO Magazine survey, more than 54 percent of IT executives indicated that their company has already implemented environmental sustainability initiatives, with both business and social reasons in mind.

Many of these enterprises that are working to implement green energy solutions on a holistic level have turned to intelligent networks and smart metering technologies.



The High Cost of Failing to Meet Customer Expectations

By Mae Kowalke

Providers of next gen communications services often find it a challenge to meet customer expectations. Because life is so busy and fast-paced for consumers, the key to winning, serving and retaining clients often boils down to quickly and effectively responding to customer calls—especially calls originating from mobile phones. 

A recent Opus Research report authored by Senior Analyst Dan Miller explores the topic of meeting customer service level expectations, and introduces the concept of intelligent Customer Front Door (iCFD).

Miller describes iCFD as “a set of applications and technological resources that enable businesses to identify callers and quickly aggregate information about them to assist in successfully resolving their needs.”

Implementing iCFD is typically an incremental process, involving the integration of intelligent routing and self service into contact center applications.



The Eternal Challenge for Wireless Providers: Ensuring Quality with Wildly Fluctuating Bandwidth

By Ed Silverstein

With advances in mobile networks, many changes are ahead. Service providers will need to plan for fluctuations in bandwidth consumption. They also want to be able to maintain the quality of the user experience.

These changes are the result of mobile service providers moving to 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks, explains Alcatel-Lucent. But for service providers to take advantage of the benefits that IP and LTE offer, they will need to change to a business model that takes advantage of users’ needs for enhanced services and applications, says the company.

It is clear that the need is there, and it is rising exponentially.



How Can Service Providers Benefit from the Healthcare Revolution?

By Ed Silverstein

There has never been a more important time in the relationship between healthcare and communications. Alcatel-Lucent works with healthcare providers to develop a communications infrastructure that improves patient care. The company realizes healthcare operators need access to knowledge instantly and the right people connected at the right time. They have to improve responses and increase the time caregivers can spend with patients.

Healthcare providers face the multiple challenges of enhancing patient care while improving operational efficiency and ensuring clinician satisfaction.



Mobile Payments Opening Up Huge Opportunities for Service Providers

By Ed Silverstein

An increasing number of network providers are adopting new business models and embracing open development. Such activities represent new strategies to accelerate application enablement and address the growing demand for applications across consumers and enterprises.

By efficiently enabling applications and collaborating with third parties in a more open manner, network providers can establish their place as value-added participants in the emerging application ecosystem. There is no “one-size fits all” approach for network providers to accomplish these objectives. Instead, network providers will need to consider, and possibly adopt, multiple business models to reap the full benefits of the application opportunity.


Operators Must Seize Key Vertical Market Opportunities

By Susan Campbell

As a service provider, you have endured a number of changes in the recent past. You no longer can survive by simply offering voice and messaging services and consumers want so much more. You have likely had to change your business model and align yourself with key partners in order to identify opportunities and leverage your assets in order to change directions in your strategy.

Within that new strategy is the need to align yourself with proven players so you can better address the opportunities within key vertical markets. One provider who is helping service providers across the globe to re-define their strategies and position themselves for sustainable revenue generation is Alcatel-Lucent.



Bridging 2G, 3G and 4G Network Capabilities via LTE

By Susan Campbell

Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks have gained much attention as of late, especially as network operators are scrambling to keep up with the data demands on their legacy networks. The bandwidth demands aren’t likely to reverse and those operators unable to keep up will soon learn how quickly customer churn can proliferate through all channels.

While the change to LTE can seem daunting and even scary, the good news is that such a transformation can solve a number of problems that the increase in demand has caused. At the same time, LTE can help to reduce the cost per megabit and build a service-aware infrastructure that will appeal to mobile broadband services.

This is much easier said than done, however.



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