How telecom operators can benefit from outsourcing international connectivity services

On 02-04-2021
Reading time : 3 minutes

Telcos are under pressure to evolve their networks, develop profitable services, and prevent revenue erosion, all in the face of a widespread skills shortage. Outsourcing and out-tasking to an experienced service provider can cut development times and costs and let them focus on serving customers, even when it comes to international connectivity services usually considered as core business. Here are four areas where operators can benefit from managed services.

Outsourcing roaming services to accelerate deployment

Extend roaming coverage in a few weeks

For every mobile operator, international roaming coverage is one of the key differentiators. To give subscribers the best connectivity while roaming abroad, they must be able to forecast the roaming traffic and be able to negotiate profitable bilateral agreements. Not to forget the uncertainty caused by the COVID crisis and the added complexity of new services such as 5G and 6G in the making. Naturally, the bigger you are, the better skills and bargaining power you may have. 

To overcome the challenge and concentrate on their subscribers, operators big and small could consider outsourcing international roaming agreements. This could be partially, or entirely, to a wholesaler that offers managed services on a pay-per-use principle. It lets operators rapidly provide international roaming coverage to customers without the need to negotiate time-consuming bilateral agreements. It also presents the possibility to complete their own bilateral roaming agreements with competitive prices. Orange Roaming Sponsor is tailored to helping operators get the best quality roaming at lower costs.

From bilateral to multilateral roaming model with a simple connection

A similar approach could be applied to roaming hubs. An operator would connect to the hub, thereby gaining access to all the other operators connected to the hub. Then, the operator can request a roaming partnership with other operators within the hub in a few clicks. Both incoming and outgoing traffics can then be exchanged without further effort. Orange offers Roaming Global Exchange, which lets operators save time and effort on setting up, testing and managing bilateral agreements and settlements.

Outsourcing voice traffic to regain profitability 

Despite rumours of its decline, voice remains a huge market. During 2020, it experienced a 20% spike1. Revenues from voice are still important to operators, though making margins from it are increasingly difficult. Operators need skilled workforces to manage international voice traffic to guarantee quality, optimise margins, and stay profitable. 

Buying voice as a managed service from a wholesaler lets operators benefit from economies of scale. By including anti-fraud solutions depending on the operator’s needs, the wholesaler can also guarantee both security and quality of voice traffic. Furthermore, operators can also leverage the wholesaler’s business intelligence to optimise traffic and revenues. 

It also means operators don’t need to allocate resources or build in-house teams to manage it and can maintain voice revenues while focusing on core business and growing market share. Orange provides operators with the Serenity Voice Management solution to help them drive all these benefits from outsourcing voice traffic management.

Managed content delivery service: optimum media quality with limited CAPEX

Internet service providers who want to offer customers over the top (OTT) services via a content delivery network (CDN) can benefit from a managed service approach too. To provide OTT services through a CDN, operators need dedicated resources within their network. This means presence in data centres, servers, other hardware, plus a CDN software environment and associated license. They also need engineering skills to connect networks and ensure content distribution. As content becomes higher quality over time, there will be an increased demand for bandwidth and low latency, something else OTT service providers must keep up with.

All this requires large CAPEX investments and commitments, resulting in a long time to achieve return on investment (ROI). By outsourcing CDN management, ISPs can deploy OTT services faster and at a lower cost, with solid guarantees on Quality of Service (QoS). Suppliers that offer CDN services already have the necessary infrastructure, high volume license deals with CDN software providers, and engineering skills in place. Orange Media Delivery Boost solution supports OTT strategies and ensures efficient and secure content delivery.

Outsourced telecommunications security solutions to protect your business and customers

In telecommunications security, operators and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) often lack the in-house skills to deliver the necessary levels of security and digital risk protection. For voice anti-fraud services, DDoS protection, or messaging anti-fraud, the security solutions required are very specific to the type of traffic and the type of fraud. And it is a growing challenge: in the 2019 Cyber-Telecom Crime Report2, Europol reported that telecom fraud cost the industry $32.7 billion worldwide. New fraud techniques surface every day and existing scamming techniques are constantly evolving. To protect revenues, end-user data and their B2B customers’ businesses, operators and ISPs must come up with an efficient security strategy and keep up with the trends.

High-capacity to protect against the largest attacks

Buying security as a managed service from a telecoms wholesaler who has the necessary skills in place is a practical way forward. They already have a team of top-notch security experts and a necessary infrastructure capable of managing high volume attacks. This is especially true for DDoS attacks as they have intensified in frequency, volume and complexity lately. In-house solutions may not be sized to mitigate the largest attacks. A cloud-based solution with multiple cleaning centers across the globe will guarantee the high capacity mitigation system operators need to protect their and their customers’ busines.

AI-enhanced solutions to maximise protection

Large providers will also have the means to invest in the latest technologies to maximise protection. Orange intensively works on empowering its services with AI (Artificial Intelligence). Our @First solution uses Big Data and auto-learning technologies to detect voice fraud in real-time and protect our customers’ margin. 

Operators might not always turn to managed services as a solution to business challenges, but in many cases, it could be their best way forward. The economic and operational gains are genuine and hugely beneficial and worth investigating today. 


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