More than half of communications service providers indicated that most of their service offerings are digital today, according to a survey by CSG International in partnership with Pipeline Market Research. The survey polled 100 communications service providers worldwide, including telco, cable and telecom companies, to determine the current state, opportunities and challenges on the path to becoming digital service providers.
The survey found that 73% of communications service providers expect all or most of their services to be digital within the next 3 years, noting a 17% increase between those that consider all their services to be digital today (3%) and those that expect all their service to be digital within the next three years (20%). These providers are taking on several initiatives to upgrade their services to digital, including updating business processes (69%); improving the customer experience across devices (62%); improving the technical resources pool (54%); and updating IT and BSS technologies (52%). In addition, the majority of respondents indicated they will be investing in creating a differentiated multiscreen experience (69%).
Meanwhile, a majority of the service providers surveyed considered offering consumer-facing digital services such as video-on-demand, and becoming a digital service provider had the most significant potential to increase revenue. Almost equally important to revenue growth is the ability to offer vertical services such as smart grid, healthcare and financial services. And machine-to-machine and Internet of Things transactions are considered as the second most significant potential to increase top-line revenue growth. Major cable operators like Comcast have been expanding its smart home and other IoT offerings. The MSO is teaming with Earth Networks to help Xfinity Home customers better monitor energy use and further reduce energy costs.
In terms of investment priorities, service providers ranked creating a differentiated end-to-end customer experience across devices as the top investment area in the next 3 years, followed by optimizing and consolidating IT infrastructure and enhancing operational processes to support connectivity of services across platforms. The survey was conducted between August 28 and September 18, 2015.