GlobalData, a data and analytics company has posited that there is no significant evidence to show that the COVID-19ravaging Covid-19 has in any way disrupted innovative projects in the telecom industry.

Rather, the crisis is only serving to underscore the logic of digital transformation, which is accelerating telco ambition to go further and faster, with the short to mid-term prospects for telco innovation looking good and have arguably ‘improved.

“What is now becoming abundantly clear is that none of the umbrella or ‘macro’ telco innovation projects – digital transformation, automation, big data, AI, software-centric networks and cybersecurity – have been disrupted in any significant way, and carriers have been keen to communicate as much,” said Emma Mohr-McClune, Service Director at GlobalData.

He argued that the macro innovation projects have not faced the same challenges as other areas of the business. The DevOps engines driving these macro projects to align well with the home working imperatives that have seen most operators worldwide send their staffers home to work for sustained periods. But also, within many carriers, these macro projects are in the main already quite mature, with well-planned evolution roadmaps, and are linked to the future of the telco’s own business transformation progress.

“Beneath the macro level of telco innovation, we’ve also seen some evidence of innovation micro project re-prioritization, both on the consumer and enterprise level, and this is likely to have the most influence on the short to the mid-term shape of those macro innovation strategies,” he continued

In many cases, this evidence of re-prioritization is directly linked to the short-term requirements of a market facing the prospect of sustained lockdown disruption, both implicitly and explicitly. For example, Vodafone recently decided to prioritize business surveillance solutions within its IoT portfolio, to more rapidly commercialize heat detection cameras for buildings. This kind of innovation project re-prioritization, however, isn’t disrupting the macro innovation layer. Rather, it’s producing a set of compelling case studies that will make it easier for all operators to sell digital innovation to a broad array of segments.


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