ZTE finds its VOICE in the connected economy

Alongside healthy growth figures for the first six months of 2016, ZTE has outlined the five pillars it will base its business around through to 2020 to stimulate development.

Over the course of the period, year-on-year revenues increased 4% to $7.1 billion, with profits accounting for $260 million, as demand for 4G in ZTE’s domestic market offset restrictions on the business in the US. The team also outlined its mobile information and communications technology (M-ICT) 2.0 strategy to drive growth over the next four years which focuses on what the company has coined VOICE. The VOICE acronym takes into account five developing trends in the telco industry; virtuality, openness, intelligence, cloudification and the Internet of everything.

“Guided by the strategies and solutions embodied in M-ICT 2.0, ZTE will drive the rapid, sustainable development of the global ICT industry,” said Zhao Xianming, CEO of ZTE. “As we capitalize on the VOICE trends, we’ll be boldly trying new business models, while reinventing existing practices to capture major market opportunities for ZTE, our partners and customers.”

The team believe the M-ICT 2.0 will aid the businesses in capitalizing on opportunities in an ecosystem defined by the emergence of the sharing economy and the increasing use of peer-to-peer networks, as well as dependence on the pervasive of cloud computing platforms and services.

“During this period of disruption, anything that can be connected in the world will be made digital and interconnected in order to support the future digital economy,” the company said in a white paper which outlined M-ICT 2.0. “This coming digital era will be defined by ubiquitous intelligence across all aspects of our lives.

“The most prominent trends will be Big Data and artificial intelligence (AI) which will automate business processes and add intelligence to support a model of real-time self-healing, self-adjustment and the ability to be proactive and predictive in responding to changing market conditions or crises.”

Trend one, virtuality, is focused on the integration of the physical world and the virtual world with enhanced experience through Big Video, VR and AR. Two, openness, looks at the transition from the traditional competition-based business model to close collaboration on an open basis. The third, intelligence, concentrates on intellectualization of all things, enhanced interaction and growing intelligence on multiple levels. Trend four, assumes cloud platforms are to the basis for enabling the digital economy. Finally, the Internet of Everything.

Through the M-ICT 2.0 strategy, ZTE is placing its chips on the development of an open and sharing digital economy, with service cloudification, interconnection of everything, ubiquitous intelligence, and the integration of virtual and physical realities. While some corners of the industry might think ZTE is off the pace, it would appear to be a perception the company is fighting to change.

The success of M-ICT 2.0 remains to be seen, as the US attitude towards ZTE remains a thorn in the side, and slowing demand over the next two years for 4G infrastructure in China could impact the fortunes of the business. However the company is not leaving anything to chance as substantial funds are now being directed towards the R&D department. Huawei is already firmly established as a leader in the international markets, and now it’s time to see if ZTE can catch.

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