5G will usher in a new age
to the wireless industry. There are several different levels or sectors where
5G will play a transformative role over the next decade. Carriers are one of
those levels. Today, we are at the point in the shift between 4G and 5G where
wireless carriers must evolve in order to continue their historic growth wave.
It’s not like carriers have
a choice. If they transform, they can continue to grow. If they don’t, and as
their competitors do, they will find themselves at a competitive disadvantage. That
means they must be a player if they intend to successfully stay in the wireless
There will be two stages in
this next transformation. One, early adopters will enter with new technology
and explore new ways to connect with and interact with the customer. This will give
them a competitive advantage for a while.
AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint are early network
Two, as the industry
continues to mature, other competitors will jump in as well. Over the course of
several years, what started out as a competitive advantage will turn into a
simple cost of doing business. Every player will ultimately jump onboard.
At that point the early
adopters will continue to do strong business. As well, the followers will also
do strong business. The losers will be those companies who miss this new path.
They don’t see this as the next, big growth opportunity.
They may think the choice is
there’s. Should they update or keep things as is? This is a big mistake. The
choice is not there’s. Companies who miss these shifts typically end up
struggling for many years to come. Some even fail.
This happened with T-Mobile
several years ago as the network was moving from 2G to 3G. T-Mobile didn’t see
the need to update. So, they didn’t. That move almost killed them. They
suffered with customer loss as the Apple iPhone and Google Android entered the
marketplace and transformed everything, virtually overnight.
This same change wave also
impacted handset makers and previous leaders like Blackberry, Nokia and Palm,
crashed and burned. They are still trying to recover a decade later.
Under a new CEO T-Mobile
managed to recover. They skipped over 3G and went directly to 4G. They tried to
merge with AT&T but failed. That failure did give them some spectrum which
they desperately needed.
Over the last few years they
have seen growth in a 4G marketplace. The problem is they still have a shortage
of spectrum which will impact them with the 5G rollout. That’s why they need to
merge with Sprint, who has plenty of spectrum.
There may be new winners and losers in 5G wireless
The shift from 4G to 5G will
be just as impactful for wireless carriers. The next few years will be full of growth
opportunity and risk, and every player needs to update and upgrade everything
about the way they do business.
So, what is the future of
the carrier and what do they have to do in order to remain relevant and
competitive going forward. The future is around the growing mountain of data, information
and choices. It deals with AI, IoT the Cloud and so much more.
The only choice companies
have is deciding whether they want to be a leader or a follower. Leaders pave
the new path going forward. Leaders also take the arrows. Followers take this new
path once it is paved. However, both can do strong business and lead going
I see AT&T as a leader
and Verizon as a follower. Both are strong players and leaders in the changing
wireless industry. The weaker players are T-Mobile and Sprint. Yet, they are
still moving in this same direction.
Synchronoss helps networks transform to 5G with AI,
IoT and Cloud
So, where do network
operators turn to get the knowledge and expertise they need going forward? This
is where certain key suppliers step in.
Companies like Synchronoss
Technologies is one of these players. This is a company which helps companies
understand what is coming and helps them prepare for the massive level of
change that is coming. They do this for both leaders and followers. Their
customers include networks like AT&T, Verizon and Sprint.
In fact, Glenn Lurie is the
new CEO at Synchronoss Technologies. He comes from AT&T and AT&T
Mobility. He has spent decades helping one of the largest and most successful
carriers transform and grow over the last several decades.
His knowledge and expertise
put’s Synchronoss at the top of the list of companies which wireless networks
need. They help todays leaders hold onto their leadership position.
Qualcomm and Huawei focused on 5G network growth
Qualcomm is one of the
best-known brands in the industry. They are an American company and their
expertise in 5G puts them in a leadership position. Huawei is also an important
leader in the 5G space. While they are a global powerhouse, they struggle with acceptance
in markets like the USA, and I don’t see that lessening.
5G is going to be the
biggest growth opportunity and competitive risk the wireless industry has ever
seen. This is something every carrier needs to participate in. They need to
stay one step ahead of the change wave. They need to ride this change wave if
they want to continue to be competitive. Otherwise, just like a wave at the
beach, it will move ahead without them.
Between 5G, AI, IoT, cloud,
Omni-Channel experiences so much more, the next decade will be one of the
biggest growth opportunities we have ever seen, and we have seen plenty over
time as the networks grew from 2G to 3G to 4G and now to 5G.
The only question you should
have right now is this. Will your company be a leader like AT&T or a
follower like Verizon? Both are strong competitors. There is nothing wrong with
either strategy. However, every carrier needs to participate in this
The only wrong choice is if
you decide not to engage. Not to change. Not to update and upgrade. If you do
that, you are steering your company down that dark path where companies seldom
recover or return from. The choice is yours.
The post Kagan: Wireless carriers must evolve for 5G growth appeared first on RCR Wireless News.