Battle for customers on, but players eye peace

Staff writer
18 Oct 2012

Operators, “over-the-top” (OTT) players and device manufacturers acknowledged the importance of forming strategic partnerships to achieve business growth, according to a new research commissioned by Amdocs.

The survey covers 100 telephone interviews among executive decision makers conducted between June and July 2012 by Coleman Parkes.

Other key findings include the continuing battle over who owns the customer, with 66% of service providers saying they must own the customer in any partnering agreement. However, only 13% of device manufacturers and 14% of OTT players are prepared to envision a future in which they cede ownership of the customer experience.

Also, while it’s not surprising that service providers rate their brand strength, network quality and customer data as core assets, the survey found that both OTT players and device manufacturers largely agreed.

Further, operators increasingly see OTT players as potential partners and sources of innovation, with 70% viewing OTT players as potential partners instead of threat.

There is a cautious willingness among the three groups willing to offer and expose their core assets to achieve partnering goals – 74% of OTT players and 73% of device manufacturers are willing to expose and share their core assets. More than half (56%) of service providers are also willing to do so.

Finally, while all three groups view partnerships as a means to raise revenues and cut costs, they also have separate motivations. Two out of five operators are looking to extend network reach through partnerships, while 34% view partnerships as a tool for developing new products and services.

Device manufacturers ranked the ability to deliver a seamless experience as well as quality of service (QoS) -- a key service provider attribute -- as a key value in partnering, and 69% of OTT players cite QoS as important to their ability to compete and survive.

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