According to WIT Software, rich communications systems are set to gain traction in emerging markets in 2016 – and Google’s entry into the space will be a major factor...
Which developing or emerging markets (regions/countries) do you cover? Briefly describe your activities in these markets.
Asia-Pacific, Latin America and India
What are your main hardware and/or services focus areas?
Messaging and Voice solutions based on RCS
What are the top market and customer trends that will drive change in your area during 2016, and why?
Google entering the RCS ecosystem; OTT service providers offering Voice (WhatsApp, Line, Viber etc); devices supporting WiFi Calling; and Operators deploying VoLTE.
What are the solutions that will make the greatest impact in your area during 2016, and why?
Google RCS – the availability of RCS on Android will speed adoption of RCS for next generation messaging. Operators launching VoLTE will encourage the launch of RCS to add value and extend the reach of VoLTE.
What changes need to be made to speed up developments and what can hold them back?
Operator inertia and short-sighted approaches.
Recognition that messaging is the launch pad for voice, and a foundation for future 'digital life' services.
Recognition that operators need to remain as messaging and voice service providers, rather than fall into the role of data network provide.
Which technologies will be the most important in emerging markets in 2016?
4G/LTE; VoLTE; OTT; Android
Explain why your selections will be important in 2016.
Operators are launching 4G networks worldwide. VoLTE is very challenging to launch, and only works on a limited selection of handsets. Meanwhile OTTs will launch competitive voice services over 4G and wi-fi, resulting in voice cannibalisation.
Google will provide RCS natively on Android N, and may also become a global RCS service provider. This is both a positive move, and a threat to operators who don’t have their own RCS service. Google want to insert themselves into the messaging value chain and reap the 'big data' rewards from this. Once again, operators have been too slow to innovate legacy SMS and CS voice services!
Gavin Webster is the SVP of Sales at WIT Software