With that fascinating question, Jeremy Harris, ADTRAN Director of Subscriber Solutions and Experience, kicked off an insightful Light Reading radio show on "Virtualizing the Subscriber Experience."
In the battle for the broadband customer, service providers are beginning to recognize that marketing "speed" alone will not help them win customers. As outlined in part 1 of this blog, service providers need to understand innovation dimensions and double-down on efforts to impact the "subscriber experience" to effectively compete for subscribers' wallet-share. So where do you start?
In the radio show, Jeremy outlined how the subscriber experience should cover all touchpoints of the customer journey, and that starts with their very first interaction. Jeremy highlighted initial service activation, which traditionally has involved multiple proprietary systems leading to data entry errors and swivel chair operations, resulting in multiple contact center calls and expensive truck rolls - identifying service activation as one target area for service innovation. Jeremy pointed to the shift towards SD-Access networks that enables end-to-end service orchestration, simplifying and automating provisioning, resulting in delighted subscribers from day one.
Jeremy also highlighted emerging tools and technologies such as self-healing Wi-Fi technologies and Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning that allow service providers to leverage network and subscriber analytics, virtualize service delivery and management, improving both the subscriber experience and service velocity. I'd encourage you to check-out the radio show in its entirety on Light Reading's website.
BTW, I still haven't thrown away my old iPhone 4S box or the subsequent ones. I'd love to hear your thoughts/comments on this topic.
Historic $2 Billion CAF II Auction Will Provide Broadband Expansion Funding January 23, 2018
Historic $2 Billion CAF II Auction Will Provide Broadband Expansion Funding
The FCC is in the middle of planning a historic broadband funding opportunity. This initiative will provide as much as $2 billion in funding for broadband carriers who elect to bring broadband services to unserved and underserved areas of the country. Hailing myself from rural Kentucky, I am especially eager to see the benefits realized from these communities being broadband-enabled, just like those hailing from other densely populated communities. "Closing the digital divide is my number one priority, and through this innovative Connect America Fund auction, we are poised to take the next big step in reaching that goal," said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai in a press release announcing the auction. "In rural America, broadband opens the doors of opportunity by connecting remote communities to global markets, jobs, education, health care and information."
Operators selected from these auctions will be required to deliver 10/1 Mbps broadband to thousands of census blocks https://www.fcc.gov/maps/caf2-auction-final-areas/ across the country. These are high-cost areas, and winning broadband providers agree to build broadband facilities at the lowest cost, among all the bidders. Winning bidders must also offer at least one voice and one broadband service. Service fees must be reasonably comparable to similar offerings in urban areas.
There are timeline requirements as well. Service must be offered to:
40 percent of the required number of locations in a state by the end of the third year of support
An additional 20 percent in each subsequent year
100 percent by the end of the sixth year of support
The exact deployment schedule is determined by the carriers themselves, not the FCC. Winning operators will receive support over a 10-year period, payable monthly. There is a $146.10 per-location-per-month support cap.
Recipients will be required to file annual reports and build-out milestone certifications, and submit the locations where they offer qualifying service on a rolling basis.
Broadband carriers of all types and sizes are encouraged to participate. The FCC expects to see participation from customary providers like RLECs, but also from electric cooperatives, wireless ISPs, and other non-traditional broadband carriers.