ST. LOUIS, Jan. 8, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Amdocs, the leading provider of customer experience systems and services, today released the findings of a global survey that explores the current state of service provider Wi-Fi deployments and analyzes service provider perspectives on the strategic importance of Wi-Fi control and monetization. The research, conducted for Amdocs by global research and consultancy firm Analysys Mason, found that service differentiation is now viewed as the top driver for Wi-Fi – ahead of Wi-Fi data offloading – and that discovering new and innovative ways to monetize Wi-Fi is becoming a top priority for service providers.
Key survey findings:
- Wi-Fi is critical to service provider growth strategies: eighty-nine percent of all service providers surveyed (including fixed, mobile and cable) have either deployed, or plan to deploy or leverage, Wi-Fi networks. On average, respondents ranked Wi-Fi's importance as 7+ out of 10, underscoring the strategic value of Wi-Fi for service provider growth.
- Service differentiation is the top driver for Wi-Fi. Forty percent of service providers cited service differentiation as the #1 driver for their Wi-Fi strategies, indicating that operators expect Wi-Fi to be more than a solution for simply offloading congested networks and are interested in using it to provide incremental value to their customers.
- A seamless experience is considered strategically important, but authentication issues are viewed as the top technical barrier to deploying Wi-Fi: providing a seamless subscriber experience between cellular and Wi-Fi networks was weighted strongly (average score: 8.1 out of 10) by service providers, which suggests that they view a high-quality customer experience across 3G/4G/Wi-Fi as a top priority. However, user authentication ranked highest among the top technical barriers to deploying Wi-Fi, highlighting the importance of flexible and secure authentication in achieving a seamless experience.
- Wi-Fi roaming is a priority for service providers – on average, Wi-Fi roaming – while still a relatively immature market -- was ranked 8 out of 10 in terms of strategic importance.
- New monetization models needed: Fifty-seven percent of service providers who have deployed Wi-Fi claim they are monetizing their offerings, but the survey also found that many of them are looking for innovative models that go beyond directly charging customers (who typically equate Wi-Fi with free Internet access). These findings suggest that operator business cases for Wi-Fi services are underdeveloped.
- First-mover advantage is critical: capturing key strategic locations for Wi-Fi hotspots before they are claimed by competitors is a key objective for many service providers. Even "build-only" service providers will need to partner to capture these key sites.
"Our research shows that while the service provider Wi-Fi market is still in its early stages, service providers are adopting a forward-looking attitude that goes beyond using regular Wi-Fi to offload congested 3G and 4G networks," said Chris Nicoll, principal analyst at Analysys Mason. "While offload is still a priority, it's clear that service providers are looking to service provider Wi-Fi as a competitive differentiator, and there is strong interest in exploring new and innovative business models for Wi-Fi monetization."
"Service providers are now focusing on service differentiation, customer experience and monetization in Wi-Fi," said Rebecca Prudhomme, Amdocs vice president for product and solutions marketing. "This underscores the importance of having secure, scalable authentication and authorization solutions in place for ensuring a seamless experience as customers move in and out of the Wi-Fi network. Furthermore, real-time policy control opens up new opportunities for Wi-Fi monetization by allowing service providers to offer a range of differentiated services over Wi-Fi, such as tiered services and premium quality of service."
Amdocs authentication and policy control solutions enable service providers to introduce Wi-Fi services to their customers quickly and cost effectively, with secure, carrier-grade network access, 3G/4G offload capabilities that ensure a transparent subscriber access experience across networks, and real-time policy control for monetizing innovative Wi-Fi services.
The survey is based on quantitative research by Analysys Mason involving telephone interviews with decision-makers at more than 30 service providers globally, including North America, Caribbean and Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia-Pacific. The research was conducted in October 2012.
- Amdocs and Analysys Mason will host a free webinar, "The Wi-Fi Monetization Opportunity," on the research findings on Tuesday, Jan. 15 at 10:00 am ET. Click here to register.
- Learn more about Amdocs authentication and policy control solutions.
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For 30 years, Amdocs has ensured service providers' success and embraced their biggest challenges. To win in the connected world, service providers rely on Amdocs to simplify the customer experience, harness the data explosion, stay ahead with new services and improve operational efficiency. The global company uniquely combines a market-leading BSS, OSS and network control product portfolio with value-driven professional services and managed services operations. With revenue of $3.2 billion in fiscal 2012, Amdocs and its 20,000 employees serve customers in more than 60 countries.
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Amdocs' Forward-Looking Statement
This press release includes information that constitutes forward-looking statements made pursuant to the safe harbor provision of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements about Amdocs' growth and business results in future quarters. Although we believe the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are based upon reasonable assumptions, we can give no assurance that our expectations will be obtained or that any deviations will not be material. Such statements involve risks and uncertainties that may cause future results to differ from those anticipated. These risks include, but are not limited to, the effects of general economic conditions, Amdocs' ability to grow in the business markets that it serves, Amdocs' ability to successfully integrate acquired businesses, adverse effects of market competition, rapid technological shifts that may render the Company's products and services obsolete, potential loss of a major customer, our ability to develop long-term relationships with our customers, and risks associated with operating businesses in the international market. Amdocs may elect to update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future; however, the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to do so. These and other risks are discussed at greater length in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including in our Annual Report on Form 20-F for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2012 filed on December 11, 2012.