In our roles on the Research & Media team at TM Forum, we spend a lot of time talking to network operators and their suppliers about ‘the next big thing’. Two years ago it was network functions virtualization (NFV) and software-defined networking (SDN). Last year the buzz was around platforms, the internet of everything (IoE) and smart cities. Today it’s all about 5G.
What’s interesting is that all these hot topics are, in fact, interrelated and codependent. Increasingly, our members are looking at how they can combine virtualization, IoE and 5G to reduce costs, increase revenue and compete more effectively with digital native platform providers like Amazon and Google. This has led us to ask the question: Could platform and IoE combined be the killer use case for 5G?
We think it’s possible, but the industry needs much greater clarity about what platform means in the context of telco and how 5G can enable platform-based services. So we’re surveying operators and suppliers to ask: What do we mean by platform? What are the specific IT and technology requirements for telcos to become platform businesses? What’s the role for 5G? What are the most promising IoE applications for platform enablers? What are the management challenges that must be solved before platforms can become a successful 5G use case?
We invite you to take the survey tailored for your company: We have designed one specifically for communications service providers and another for suppliers and others who sell products and services to CSPs. All individual responses to the surveys will be kept strictly confidential, but we offer the opportunity for an interview as well if you have more to tell us than the survey allows.
And as a thank-you for participating, everyone who completes the survey in its entirety will be entered into a drawing to win your choice of either an Apple Watch or Sony Playstation VR Headset Core System.