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Huawei promises loads of cloud and video goodness at MWC 2017

Huawei pre MWC 2017

Huawei hosted its pre-MWC 2017 event in London and its message will be all about the operator video opportunity and how it’s made possible by the ‘full cloud’ model.

A consistent trend in Huawei’s messaging over recent years has been an emphasis on big-picture concepts such as operational transformation, full-cloud and big video, and this year will be no exception. At the show there will be no fewer than seven cloud product launches, which are summarised below.

  • CloudAIR and Cloud RAN – Moving the RAN and the air interface to the cloud – improved spectral efficiency
  • CloudFAN – fixed access network – enables consistently higher service quality
  • CloudMetro – network slicing for metropolitan networks
  • CloudCampus – B2B solution to help operators sell into business – $10 billion opportunity
  • CloudEPN/SD-WAN – More B2B – VPN for cloudified enterprises
  • Integrated telco cloud – the foundation of all the other cloudy stuff

A move to the ‘full cloud’ model, which Huawei seems to think will be best enabled by buying all of the above, is a key precursor to exploiting the Big Video opportunity, as discussed late last year at the Huawei Operation Transformation event. CSPs are thought to be on a strong position to capitalise on the exponential volume of data traffic attributable to video as they are the keepers of the bandwidth and therefore a key piece of the puzzle. Here’s a summary of how Huawei sees the video opportunity playing out commercially for CSPs.

  • Broadband monetization = better ARPU, churn, etc
  • Experience monetization = better video products
  • Ecosystem monetization = new B2B opportunities

An unnamed Korean operator – almost certainly LG U+ – has apparently increased its subscriber share by three percentage points and its ARPU by 50% as a result of talking all Huawei’s good advice on video.

A couple of buzzwords that were, perhaps surprisingly, well down the pecking order were 5G and IoT. To some extent that’s because Huawei considers them an explicit consequence of all the cloud cleverness that it thinks is necessary for CSPs to even survive over the next decade or so.

To some extent IoT seems to be considered just too broad and ill-defined a term to be useful and companies like Huawei like to talk more specifically about helping CSPs diversify their client base in a more B2B direction. The only LPWAN technology spoken about was NB-IoT, adding to the sense of that being the default and alternatives such as LoRa and Sigfox being more niche offerings.

On 5G, Huawei preferred to dwell more on the incremental steps (4.5G, etc) being taken towards it, which is sensible as these things take years to play out. Apparently there are already 68 4.5G networks globally and that number is expected to double this year. One trial Huawei was keen to flag up was the transmission of a 600 Mbps connection over a distance of 1.5 kilometres using the 3.5 GHz band. The incorporation of higher frequency spectrum is, of course, expected to be a key component of 5G.

So Huawei’s presence at MWC 2017 promises to be a big picture affair, with lots of talk of digital transformation, devops and generally getting with the times. That doesn’t make for easy headlines but is probably what CSPs need to hear. Whether or not they have either the budget or the ability to act on all this advice is another matter.


Daily Poll

What would you consider the biggest roadblock for autonomous vehicles?

  • Making sure AI is good enough (23%, 14 Votes)
  • Consumer acceptance (22%, 13 Votes)
  • Regulatory approval (22%, 13 Votes)
  • Cyber security (12%, 7 Votes)
  • Developing the ecosystem (8%, 5 Votes)
  • Making autonomous vehicles price competitive (5%, 3 Votes)
  • Network performance and connectivity (5%, 3 Votes)
  • Political issues such as job redundancies (2%, 1 Votes)

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With Amazon and Google launching smart home initiatives, have the telcos missed out on their chance to cash in on this market?

  • Yes, Google and Amazon will now dominate this space (65%, 40 Votes)
  • Consumers won't have made up their mind (19%, 12 Votes)
  • No, Google and Amazon will not be able to replace the telcos in the mind of the consumer (16%, 10 Votes)

Total Voters: 62

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