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How cloud computing service providers can benefit from the open internet framework

the opportunity

New network segmentation capabilities supported by stand-alone 5G deployments can increase revenue opportunities with customized subscriptions designed to meet consumers’ specific connectivity needs.

This presents an opportunity for CSPs to evolve from a downward spiral of a single online subscription model with its focus on better marketing performance and more gigabytes at a lower price, to a monetization model that provides connectivity with different characteristics based on new types of subscriptions and charges. This scenario also benefits the user, who can make more informed and customized decisions about which subscription he should purchase to suit his needs.

For example, offering “multiple payment” – where multiple bills can be sent to the same device – opens up more revenue streams for the operator, as well as flexibility for users who may want to have more than one subscription, paid for by multiple users. While 5G will eventually connect all devices, these revenue streams for advanced use cases are still in their infancy, while multiple payments on smartphones are a tangible opportunity right now.

These types of multiple subscriptions based on different QoS characteristics, including speed and volume, are supported by the EU’s Open Internet regulatory framework and the regulatory guidelines that complement it.

Creating premium services

For communication service providers, effective identification of ‘user’ is crucial to creating distinct services. The “user” in this case is not necessarily the person or organization using the service, but rather the person who decides which subscription to purchase and then pay for.

For example, the employer is the “user” when selecting and purchasing a subscription for an employee. The parent is the “user” when purchasing for their child. The school can be the “user” when choosing solutions for its students. The principle of revenue management – whereby telecom service providers implement a variable pricing strategy based on usage expectation based on user characteristics and network availability – makes perfect sense in this scenario.

Putting control in the hands of the user

One of the core principles of the European Union’s Open Internet Framework is user empowerment. Multiple subscription models give the user the choice and flexibility to select the connection that best suits their needs. For example, when we use our smartphone to shop online, we are the user – but when we use it to join a video conference with our colleagues, the business owner is the user. Having multiple subscriptions on the same device, to allow for the different ways in which they will be used, makes sense for all parties, and ultimately the user decides which of their subscriptions they want to make use of and when.

From a technical perspective, standalone 5G technology and its centralized functionality, network slicing, will be key in delivering the opportunity for multi-subscription, multi-pay, and multi-performance. Network slicing provides service flexibility and the ability to deliver services faster at scale, with high security, isolation, and workable properties. Network slicing represents a $200 billion opportunity by 2030 for telecom service providers — and user-based subscription models could represent a very attractive slice of that pie.