Unified Communication: It's Time For Alternative Solutions

Author: Anjan Ghosal
Founder and CEO, Intellinet-Tech
The change in the communications sector has been remarkable in the past 5 years. The major reason for this is convergence of devices, i.e. unified communication driven by the new generation of smartphones, Internet tablets, and PCs that allow users to access content and technology on a common platform. Though this trend has got the consumers excited, it has also equally put the carriers in a fix. The primary issue is the explosion of data that has happened in the last few years.

While the data has increased exponentially, the network bandwidth of carriers has not. Operators have seen their data traffic grow at a staggering rate. Verizon Wireless’ data traffic grew seven-fold in the two years from 2006 to 2008. Over the last three years, AT&T has seen a 5,000 percent increase in the data traffic on its network, and has experienced significant network overload as a result; almost entirely due to increasing broadband use.

The smartphone penetration is merely 20 percent today, but it is slated to increase to 50-60 percent in the near future, therefore causing an increased hazard for operators due to congestion of bandwidth. Linear thinking of gradually increasing the network spectrum from 2G to 3G and now to 4G will not work. Carriers need to look out for alternative solutions like offloading the data onto wi-max and wi-fi. They need to partner with the gateway providers like us, Cisco, Juniper, and Stoke who provide network convergence and mobile data offload solutions and accelerate the deployment of next generation applications and services.

Entrepreneurs today have to be slick as they have to operate within limited capital. Hence, apart from having a good product, it is important that they have the right go-to-market strategy by picking the right channels and penetrate the market effectively.
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