ADTRAN today debuts its cloud-managed whole home mesh WiFi, an offering that could give operators the ability to improve their residential broadband services, reduce costs and upsell service enhancements to customers.
Service providers, whether cable or telco, are asked to solve some tough broadband support issues -- even ones they didn't create. Consumers may, for example, buy $400 or $500 gigabit home WiFi modems at retailers but, when they do not receive the expected high-speed, whole-home coverage, immediately call their operator, said Raaflaub. Providers have no visibility into a modem or set-up they did not create and have two options: Send out an expensive technician, often more than once, to try to resolve the problems or tell irate subscribers they cannot do anything since the consumers don't rent modems from them.
Neither result bodes well for the next subscriber satisfaction survey. And forget about customer loyalty.
We roll out the welcome when Matthias Mieves, Head of New Business, Sales & Marketing, Connected Home at Deutsche Telekom joins BBWN RADIO on Tuesday, April 24 at 12:00 p.m. EDT (9:00 a.m. PDT / 5:00 p.m. BST). Join us!
By combining whole home WiFi with ADTRAN's SD-Access portfolio and Mosaic, service providers can monetize the broadband infrastructure in which they've so heavily invested -- and so many competitors use to providers' disadvantage, said Raaflaub.
"Carriers want to be able to monetize their broadband to develop and deliver. Service providers are in a land grab for subscriber mindshare. Not only has Netflix got their video, but you can see Amazon and Google coming into the home for the Internet of Things," he said. "Whole home WiFi is a way for providers to take back some of the mindshare that they own."
Return on investment typically takes less than 12 months, Raaflaub estimated. ADTRAN's solution costs less than big-box stores' $500 offerings, he noted, and operators can buy other vendors' optical network terminations (ONTs) or networks, said Raaflaub.
"As a service provider, you have the benefit of taking a solution and can roll in -- for an extra $7, $8 or $9 a month -- for providing this service. The ROI is probably less than a year," he added. "Understanding a heavy user who has just bought a virtual reality headset, you will see that come up on his devices; he's on a 200Mbit/s service, you can push him to 500Mbit/s service. This is really a world where information is power. That is one of the key tenets of software-defined access."
The machines know
ADTRAN's use of machine learning further allows the system to adapt over time, recognizing for example that den users are more important than those in smaller bedrooms -- children, generally. The Mosaic portfolio prioritizes parents' usage during peak hours or at times when the network may be strained, ensuring the mother in the office and father in the living room (in other words, those who pay the bills) have better performance than the teenager who is in the middle of a 12-hour gaming marathon.
"We recognize when we give too much priority to little Jimmy and not enough to mom or dad, we get a phone call. That's the beauty of AI: It learns those things," Raaflaub said, with a laugh. "The den always has to trump the gaming console. "
Or the service provider upsells until every family member has adequate broadband access. Even better.
With Insight, service providers personalize subscriber experiences via a network intelligence tool that enables them to enhance business operations, new service sign-up and customer loyalty, ADTRAN said. For its part, Device Manager is a device management tool operators use to remotely monitor and maintain in-home customer devices and WiFi networks. By empowering providers to detect when subscribers add new equipment -- such as 4K or 8K TVs, virtual reality headsets or Internet of Things devices -- to the network, operators are easily equipped to upsell faster speeds, complementary services or promotional offers, Raaflaub noted. Modules are available for purchase alone or as part of the entire suite.
Kirsten Rundberget, open strategy lead at Fujitsu Network, discusses the industry's advances — and challenges — in the complex yet beneficial area of open technologies, and why service providers should get involved, even if they don't yet plan to deploy.
Dusty Johnson, VP of consulting at Vantage Point in South Dakota, will soon head to DC as the state's sole member of the House of Representatives, bringing with him knowledge of the digital divide, rural America and broadband.
Tune in to Broadband World News Radio on Thursday, November 1 at 8 a.m. PT, 11 a.m. ET, 3 p.m. UK as Ronan Kelly, CTO, EMEA & APAC Regions at ADTRAN, explores the five pillars of network integrity -- a topic he discussed during his recent Broadband World Forum keynote. Register now!
Fast, reliable broadband is essential to how we live, work and play today – and the upcoming arrival of 5G will only further increase demand and reliance on fiber infrastructure. Already viewed by consumers as intolerable, delays, outages or the regular maintenance difficulties associated with operating a network will become further exacerbated when residential subscribers further rely on connected devices for day-to-day life. Just as providers deploy network automation tools to reduce operational issues, they must take similar care to manage consumer expectations when they roll out fiber or new services. This webinar features leaders who will discuss how to manage marketing and consumer expectations at every stage of the network lifecycle. Marketing professionals, c-level executives and policymakers interested in drumming up fiber envy should attend.