EU data roaming charges ban: how it will impact telecoms companies
As of Thursday, data roaming charges within the European Union are no more.
This is undoubtedly good news for customers travelling abroad, but what impact is it expected to have on telecoms companies?
Instantly-recognisable, multi-national carriers – the likes of EE and Vodafone – have long been ready to comply, with some having already implemented new plans to their users ahead the June 15th deadline.
Analysts warned earlier this year that the abolition of these charges could hit such companies’ profits, with uSwitch Mobile senior commercial manager Ernest Doku claiming in February that they will have to explore areas to make up the revenue gap.
“There will certainly be a major concern from all providers in the long term and wholesale rates will have to be made up elsewhere,” he said.
GfK technology director Imran Choudhary also added: “The universal impact on all operators could definitely reach the millions in terms of revenue.
“Roaming generates a lot of turnover and it’ll definitely hit a lot of people within those businesses who are responsible for those areas. Operators may well generate different pricing structures for non-EU roaming to account for the losses.”
A number of smaller companies have already applied to the EU for an exemption, however, to avoid a potential financial impact. Operators in the Nordics, for example, predict a drop in 1 to 3% in earnings before tax.
There are protections in place too; fair-use rules dictate that if net profits are hit by 3% or more, they will be allowed to introduce roaming fees subject to gaining the relevant permission from national authorities.
Though companies are now under obligation to charge the same rates for call, text and data, they can maintain caps on data usage abroad. This will leave users still incurring roaming charges if they exceed that cap.
In turn, this has led to consumers being urged by watchdogs to check with their phone company about limits in the places they are set to visit, especially as eligible countries differ from provider to provider.
NetNumber: Time for a cloud-native transformation
NetNumber is accelerating the transition in the telecom industry to 5G as it starts a shift to cloud-native architecture to address the fast-paced demands of global subscribers and businesses.
NetNumber is offering the industry’s first cloud-native platform designed to ensure InterGENerational™ network performance addresses both the legacy and next-generation requirements of telecom networks.
“NetNumber has developed the industry’s most robust cloud-native, InterGENerational platform that addresses both the legacy and 5G requirements of telcos,” said Matt Rosenberg, Chief Revenue Officer of NetNumber.
The platform provides vertical and horizontal scale-out with low latency, coupled with a suite of data replication capabilities, which provide flexible architectural options that can evolve with the changing network over time.
“Cloud-based solutions from other vendors tend to be limited in terms of supporting particular network generations or protocols. We’ve created our latest platform TITAN.IUM to allow customers to take any generation of applications, any generation of legacy services and protocols and move them into the new world of cloud-native architecture,” said Rosenberg.
“This is a really important part for a carrier to harmonise their network, bring data services together, bring legacy with new together in order to make a more effective and efficient network, as well as reduce their cost as they scale forward,” he said.
Established in 1999, NetNumber has fostered a strong team environment that leverages the industry’s best skills to offer software solutions tailored for carriers of all dimensions. Based outside of Boston and with presence in over 20 countries, the company delivers a range of products that address all generations (2G, 3G, 4G, 5G) of network functions in the core network, deep rooted security products and services, STIR/ SHAKEN and set of options around data services in more than 90 countries.
Steeped in experience in building telecom solutions, software, protocol stacks, and integration of third party tools, the company’s development organisation has proven to supply to the industry with the most reliable and flexible solutions on the market.
“At NetNumber, we focus on our core competencies – we are dedicated to providing industry expertise in signaling, routing, security, subscriber management and data services. We provide customers a strong ROI through platform-based solutions that reduce Capex and Opex in the long-term,” commented Rosenberg.
Five reasons why customers choose NetNumber:
- Expertise - NetNumber has experts with deep knowledge in signaling/routing, security, and subscriber database management.
- Integration - An industry-first platform brings together domain services, applications, security, and global data services.
- Scale - NetNumber has the ability to seamlessly increase network efficiency using vertical and horizontal scaling.
- Speed - World-class solutions have the power to help companies create new service offerings and accelerate time to ROI.
- Savings - Customers enjoy significant savings in capex and opex, flexible deployment models, and investment protection.
NetNumber and Virgin Mobile MEA
“We're very proud of our partnership with Virgin Mobile MEA as they've taken the concept of the InterGENerational platform into their regional network strategy,” commented Rosenberg. “That’s accelerated how they develop exceptional services across the Middle East and Africa region.
“We work with them hand-in-hand to deliver multiple applications onto our platform which has enabled them to provide exceptional, advanced and innovative services to their customers across the Middle East, who demand high quality services.
“What they've really taken advantage of is scale. What I mean by that is they are putting multiple generations of applications and services onto the same platform and distributing that data across their network. That has resulted in an advantageous position of time to market and operational savings.
“Rather than having different applications for many different vendors that cause operational chaos, they've been able to consolidate that and reduce their operating costs by having everything on one common architecture. We’ve had a long-term relationship with Virgin Mobile in Saudi Arabia, and recently signed an agreement with Virgin Mobile in Kuwait.”
Rosenberg says that with these solutions, Virgin Mobile MEA can take advantage of getting to the market much quicker and faster—which is what today’s discerning customer demands.