Summer is Coming . . . And Smart Data Management on the Device Reduces Roaming Costs by Up to 40% While Maintaining the Customer Experience
By Anthony Floyd, Mobolize | Director of Strategic Partnerships
To be strictly accurate, summer is here. And while the majority of Western Europe is packing off for its annual vacation, mobile operators are nervously anticipating the considerable cost increase for the use of their roaming partner networks. The Summer Game of Roams like Home can be costly.
Thanks to the EU’s 2017 RLAH legislation, ‘bill shock’ – once the scourge of any holiday maker – has been vanquished. Millions of vacationers are now comfortable enjoying their time overseas downloading and streaming data.
The goal is to maintain a great customer experience no matter where the customer roams or how much data is used. The strain on network management due to seasonal increased data usage and the cost of roaming services is a challenge for operators. Mobolize offers a Smart Game of Roams with solutions for both issues, especially maintaining the user experience.
Let’s start with optimizing data. Settling all this roaming data is a cost now borne by the mobile operator and many have already seen 10-fold increases in roaming data usage whilst experiencing respective decreases in roaming revenues. Depending on the size of their customer base, operators are spending anything up from €10M to €90M a year on roaming costs. Importantly, in discussions with mobile network operators, they indicate that almost 60% of this is now driven by video. With no sign of this trend abating, for many operators this means Winter is coming.
Worst hit are the MVNO’s who are beholden to their host operators for all roaming services. This is simply a nightmare scenario as any roaming data is a net cost straight off bottom-line profits.
Plus, during this summer’s Game of Roams, all operators must deal with the ‘White Walkers’ – those overseas customers that use data beyond the control of their own network. They can really challenge network quality and availability.
Network availability, congestion and poor or expensive hotel/infrastructure Wi-Fi will all place significant burdens on the roaming partner network which still continues to manage their own domestic traffic. Roaming customers are potentially exposed to sub-optimal data experiences, which is not good. Worst of all, there is currently nothing operators can do about it.
Mobolize | Optimize puts smart data control on the customer’s handset and not in the core network through its exclusive on-device data management platform. Device-based video optimization stretches data usage while it improves performance with reduced buffering and stuttering. Tests show customers can experience up to 80% more data without impacting performance.
By controlling the bit rate of streaming video to devices and caching commonly used content, operators win too. For example, an operator spending €20M on roaming of which approximately €12M is video consumption could mean a savings of €8.4M, reducing roaming costs by up to 40%. Operators can set data optimization policy to all data, roaming or not, independently from any network. Optimize allows operators to reduce their network burden and control roaming costs without compromising the end user experience.
Optimize is installed on the device via an app. To make the app attractive to users, operators can offer two services that improve the customer experience. The first is Mobolize | Secure, the only SmartVPN® that doesn’t eat battery power like old-school VPNs.
Operators can also offer Mobolize | Bond which smoothly and swiftly keeps users connected as they move from Wi-Fi to cellular networks. Using the data management platform, Bond reads when the device is hanging onto a Wi-Fi network past its range and switches to cellular. This eliminates dead zones of lost connectivity.
With Mobolize, the important customer experience is maximized. Data is seamlessly connected on Wi-Fi or cellular, peace of mind prevails because all Wi-Fi connections are fully secured and video is optimized to ensure smooth delivery on any network.
Summer is here, and the prospect of realistically reducing roaming costs has to be of considerable relief to operators. What CFO wouldn’t want to save millions this summer while also improving their customer’s mobile experience and security? Thank goodness for the Smart Game of Roams from Mobolize.