What's required to effectively monetize 5G use cases?
5G deployment is accelerating rapidly but the implications are much wider than just the network. One of the most important challenges is to put in place the systems and processes to monetize 5G and the new services and business models it enables. One of the most frequent questions we get from our Business Support System (BSS) customers is “how do we plan for 5G monetization?”.
What are the use cases?
In this new report, Analysys Mason’s John Abraham describes some of the new challenges of monetizing 5G for both consumer and enterprise use cases. John leads Analysys Mason’s Monetization Platforms program and also their research into digital experience for monetization platforms. He explains how new use cases are driving new business models and investment in new platforms.
The first section of the paper investigates the costs involved in transforming the BSS environment to meet the future needs of digital service providers. Ericsson has discovered, from our own experience, that the lowest cost approach is to start from a powerful and flexible modern charging and billing environment, driven by a product catalog to provide an agile environment for new services, and evolve it to add the new protocols and features necessary for 5G.
John then goes on to consider many of the new use cases enabled by 5G. He points out that both consumer and enterprise use cases will be very important to drive the revenues expected from 5G. He points out that many operators currently have separate systems for consumer and enterprise services but that operators will need to evolve their organization structure and processes to reap the benefits of 5G.
This fits particularly well with the design and architecture of the Ericsson Digital Monetization Platform, the evolution of the proven Ericsson Charging and Billing in One product which already supports consumer and enterprise use cases, as well as converged charging and billing. One use case John talks about in detail is Network Slicing, which is already supported in Ericsson Charging.
What does that mean for monetization platforms?
Possibly the most insightful part of the report is when John talks about the need to deploy 5G monetization without knowing what use cases it will need to support in the future! John explains that this implies a multi-year, multi-step evolution in a phased approach. He emphasizes that the critical choice is to choose the right partner and the right monetization platform with a strong roadmap.
The report includes a description of the Ericsson Digital BSS portfolio as an example, explaining that it is both designed for the cloud and provides configurable business agility.
The conclusion emphasizes the need to select a partner with strong telco experience combined with a flexible platform and strong roadmap.
So, do we agree?
Pretty much! Analysys Mason have analyzed a different set of 5G use cases than we have, with more of an Enterprise focus. But the key fact remains that no one knows exactly which use cases will become the most important and the solution must handle them all.
Our focus on supporting innovative 5G use cases for both consumers and enterprises drive our view that an evolution of established BSS, and continued convergence between consumer and enterprise, will be the most effective approach. And most of our customers tell us that they see BSS evolution as a preferred low-risk but effective strategy for 5G monetization.
Read the full report now, exclusively available from Ericsson until April.