Carriers Look to OTT, Apps to Offset Losses

Carriers Look to OTT, Apps to Offset Losses

At the end of last month, the European Parliament decided to abolish roaming fees in Europe starting from June 2017. According to a report in the UK national newspaper The Telegraph, the removal of roaming charges could wipe 2% off mobile operators' revenues. While a loss of this size may not be an existential issue for carriers, it does illustrate the general trend of mobile operators coming under increasing pressure.

Video and music streaming, social network usage and IP-calling are growing. As a result, mobile data consumption is in exponential growth. This requires telecoms to increase investments into their network infrastructure. At the same time, the prevailing digital ecosystem model generates no profit to carriers. Services such as Skype, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are eating into existing carrier services. As a result, the global telecom industry's ARPU declined by 4.5% last year with the trend expected to continue.

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