Although blockchain only recently made its way onto the telecom stage, but top Indian telecom services providers executives are already into plans to leverage the technology, that’s what IBM said.
IBM told that the top Indian telcos are turning to blockchain to create new revenue streams by offering new services and bring down operational costs amid falling revenues due to intense competition.
In fact, the work has progressed to an extent where IBM has also completed proofs of concepts or PoCs for the blockchain-based platforms with these leading telcos in the country. Jitan Chandanani, Blockchain leader at IBM, said
“A majority of the market is actively in discussions. PoCs have been done to give comfort to the platform, and for the intended business outcome. We would be surprised if it’s not (commercial deployment) in 2018,”
Vishal Awal, telco leader at IBM, said that telecom firms were planning to use blockchain as a network platform for doing business.
“Almost all telcos in India are actively seeking ways and means to deploy blockchain for various use cases. We are optimistic, telcos being at the center of digital revolution, is going to be a key mover and shaker in making blockchain pervasive across the landscape,”
“The industry is undergoing massive disruption. Telcos have compelling and urgent need to reinvent and transform themselves into digital service providers and digital service enablers,”
Chandanani added that none of the telecom firms was thinking of using blockchain from a crypto perspective. He said,
“The success of bitcoins and cryptocurrencies accelerated the curiosity around the Blockchain technology. As a result, a lot of people are trying to replicate that success story. The conversation that we are having as a company across telcos, governments, and industry, cryptocurrency barely even comes up,”
According to IBM executives, Blockchain technology, offers a bigger opportunity to telcos in terms of data and content monetization, which they can do by creating a media platform using blockchain technology to directly connect content creators and cut off intermediaries to bring down costs.
Currently, the global market for blockchain is about $400-$500 million and is expected to grow beyond $6-$7 billion in next 3-4 years.
“Data and content monetization is a big use case. There is an urgent need to solve this equation of cost vs revenue for telcos. Data use is exponentially increasing, and network capacity is being augmented, but it is not leading to an exponential increase in revenue, which is not sustainable going forward. With right kind of analytics, cognitive capability and blockchain-enabled ecosystem play, telcos can tap a lot of value,”
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