I had the great privilege of participating on a panel at Mobile World Congress 2013 along with our customers, Deutsche Telekom and Vodafone, and my peers from Ericsson and Huawei. We discussed the evolution of the Network Architecture for mobile service providers.
From the infrastructure to the user, everyone agrees that the future will both bring and be driven by significant changes to the Network. In particular, by bringing together access, network and cloud we will create new business opportunities and enhanced user experiences.
Let’s start with some technology trends and market transitions:
- Device growth and smartphone adoption has been increasing exponentially and we estimate 50B connected devices by 2020 (Cisco VNI: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast)
- We further anticipate that by the end of this year, there will be more mobile devices than humans connected to the internet (Cisco VNI: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast)
- At the same time compute architecture is moving from the client-server to the mobile-cloud era; and value is shifting from the Web economy to an App economy
- All of this is resulting in a data deluge with an estimated 13x increase in mobile data traffic from 2012–2017 (Cisco VNI: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast)
The effect of these transitions is that as billions of people and things connect, there is higher intrinsic value in what we call ‘data-in-motion’. Data-In-Motion refers to real-time and near real-time information such as connection type, location, device type, access speed, and other contextual and personalized data. When this data is extracted, combined and correlated at multiple layers we deliver predictive intelligence that is extremely valuable for many business and consumer services.
This cause and effect is driving the next phase of the Internet – the Internet of Everything. At Cisco, we define the Internet of Everything as bringing together people, process, data and things to create networked connections that are more relevant and valuable than ever before – thereby turning information into actions. You can read my perspective on IoE here.
Today, mobility is associated with a device, but in the future, mobility will be associated with the persons or things that are connected to the network. To continue growing their businesses, service providers now have the opportunity to enable mobility beyond a connection to monetizing those connections with new experiences and services. Offering a differentiated connected experience to the user means that service providers need an elastic architecture that can scale that uses the intelligence from the network.
So the task ahead is to pursue these new revenue opportunities while at the same time, optimizing existing network investments. An elastic architectural approach incorporates network reach, network intelligence, and service creation velocity, so that our service provider customers can take their network of today and prepare for the future.
It’s all about the opportunity ahead for service providers. With the Internet of Everything, and as more “things” get connected to the network, this creates greater value for “data in motion” that can be used for enhanced and targeted customer services. In addition, an elastic infrastructure through virtualization can deliver faster, more agile and flexible services and thus expand into more “as a service” revenue models. And video use will continue to grow and transform many business processes in enterprise and small businesses across all verticals – creating yet another set of revenue opportunities.
We introduced Cisco Quantum™ on February 19th and with it, we can help our service provider customers build a Cisco Virtual Programmable Network, powered by the Quantum Software Suite. This is the fusion of Cloud, Network, Access and Client devices. The virtualization and programmability enabled by Quantum allows SPs to quickly to enter new markets and generate new revenue, while scaling to meet demands and drive down costs.
I’m excited by all the opportunities that the Internet of Everything brings, not only to our enterprise customers, but to our service provider customers as well. And I know that we’ve only just begun to tap into its potential…
Hear more from Padmasree Warrior on the MWC show floor