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Telecom Industry News

By: Scott St. John

This month brought news of a massive $146 million merger between T-Mobile US and Sprint Corporation to accelerate nationwide 5G innovation. Collaborations between enterprises resulted in several key proof of concept innovation scenarios and use cases to advance preparations for 5G. And eight countries in western and central Africa gained access to the latest in big-screen cinematic technology, and the FCC slammed Tele Circuit Network Corporation with a $5.33 million fine.

The top stories from the month are summarized below. To view all the news as it breaks, check out Pipeline's News Center or subscribe to receive our weekly news summary.

Industry Events

WUG 2018

No one quite does it like WeDo. Pipeline had the opportunity to attend WeDo Technologies' 2018 Worldwide User Group (WUG18) in Cascais, Portugal earlier this month. The event brought together over 250 professionals from around the world, including those from nearly 70 service providers, in an exciting and compelling three-day event forum that rivals many larger "name brand" industry events.

The event featured back-to-back sessions detailing how WeDo's customers are using WeDo's solutions to safeguard their revenue and predict, prevent and catch risks. It spotlighted digital transformation initiatives at service providers around the globe, dove into important topics such as the Internet of Things (IoT), and showcased the company's Open Innovation project. The conference also featured timely and relevant presentations from WeDo partners, including Ericsson and Microsoft, on topics such as 5G and artificial intelligence (AI). In addition, it offered service-provider attendees a 60-day trail of its RAID.Cloud product for free. 

WeDo spared no expense to make sure the event was success, valuable, and enjoyable for all participants. Direct access to WeDo's executive leadership was peppered throughout the event and throughout the network activities both at and outside of the venue.  Most notably, Pipeline had the opportunity to interact directly with many WeDo's service-provider customers throughout the event, who spoke highly of the event and glowingly about WeDo. One after the other, customers stated their confidence in the company, its products, and—most importantly—its ability to deliver. From our perspective, WUG18 certainly delivered on all fronts, and we're looking forward to the company's North American and Asia Pacific events in the months to come.

Digital Transformation World

The following week, Pipeline headed to Nice, France for the TM Forum's Digital Transformation World (formerly Management World, TeleManagement World, etc.). The overall sense was that was that this year's event fell flat, and a general sense of urgency was felt by exhibitors and participants on the state of the event—and the industry as a whole. Conversations throughout the show were spun around whether the lower event attendance was a sign of the times or a result of the ongoing repositioning of the TM Forum. Several of the people Pipeline spoke to felt the agenda was overreaching and failed to address the real-world problems facing operators today. Yet, several also stated they found value in the event citing impressive catalyst programs, prearranged customer meetings, and quality of the executive meeting service as reasons. Overall, it seems the core focus of the TM Forum, such as catalysts, is still strong and a notable quality remains with the event. But, the juxtaposition between the traditional market (OSS/BSS) and the new digital world leaves a question of whether the event can come together to effectively address one, both, or either.

Pipeline's independent meetings with both service providers and technology companies were productive. Most notably, a focus on data aggregation—or the "single pane of glass" approach—was a common topic. Companies such as Federos showcased system consolidation for better data decisioning, and we had an opportunity to meet with its customer, CGI, who has used Federos' product for massive system consolidation. Look for an upcoming case study in a future issue of Pipeline. Similarly, Pipeline met with EXFO, who is putting its recent acquisition of Ontology to good use. The company announced "Automated Common Cause Analysis" to map performance metrics to network topology and speed trouble shooting. 



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