Category Archives: Nokia

Amazon steps into European 5G market through strategic cloud deal with O2 Telefónica

O2 Telefónica in Germany, in partnership with Nokia, has made a groundbreaking move by deploying 5G standalone core software on Amazon Web Services (AWS). This marks a significant milestone as it is the first instance of an existing mobile operator shifting its core network to a public cloud.  Traditionally, telecom networks have migrated IT and other… Read more »

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Nokia and Innova Solutions partner to deliver programmable network applications

Nokia and Innova Solutions, a global digital transformation solutions provider, have announced a partnership that will utilise the Nokia Network as Code platform with developer portal (platform) to create and deliver programmable network solutions. The agreement will accelerate the digital transformation of enterprises in industries such as banking/financial services, transportation and logistics, technology, life sciences,… Read more »

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Consumer buying decisions still based on price – Nokia

A racehorse and jockey in a horse raceResearch from Nokia has highlighted consumer buying decisions for smartphones and post-paid contracts are still based on financial drivers as opposed to value add propositions, reports

With the worldwide number of smartphone and total number of mobile phone users estimated to exceed 2.6 billion and 5 billion respectively by 2019, the race is now on for operators to capture the biggest share of this lucrative market. Nokia’s research addressed a number of factors surround churn rate and customer acquisition, as well as wider trends, though concerns could be raised on the financial drivers for purchasing decisions placing operators in a similar arena to utilities companies.

Efforts in recent years by the operators have been to shift the focus of the consumer away from price, and move purchasing decisions towards value and performance. T-Mobile US announced a further prong to its ‘Un-carrier’ strategy this week, as it will reward customers with stock, seemingly for nothing in return in the first instance, though additional shares can be acquired by referring new customers to the brand. There have been similar efforts from operators around the world, though the statistics do not suggest there has been a significant impact.

In comparison between 2014 and 2016, the number of respondents who said their attitudes on retention were influenced by cost and billing was still the highest factor, but did drop from 45% to 40%. In terms of the reasons for choosing a new operator, 45% stated this would be based on price, with value adds, mobile technology and choice of devices, only accounting for 17%, 14% and 11% respectively. The quality of a network is also a concern, though the drivers behind choosing a new or staying with an operator are still predominantly price driven.

While price is still the number one objective for customers, the statistics do highlight value added services are having more of an impact on customer retention than acquisition. In terms of definitions, core operator offerings, such as SMS, data and minutes were not included in the research, however value added services increased the likelihood in a customer staying with an operator by 11%, the perception of a network’s quality was up 55% and the number of customers that used more than one gigabyte of data per month was also up 15%.

While operators are generally perceived as trying to avoid competing for new customers solely on price, the research does seem to indicate this would be the most effective route. While retention can seemingly be influenced by value adds, a utility model may be difficult to avoid for customer acquisition.

“We can see the marketing battles to acquire mobile subscribers are fierce,” said Bhaskar Gorti, Applications & Analytics president at Nokia. “What we don’t see as well is the work operators do every day to retain customers. Our study shows how important that work is – and also how challenging it is as customers, attached to their phones, demand higher levels of service.”

In line with industry expectations, 4G usage is on the increase with 38% of new subscribers over the last 12 months choosing 4G networks. The uptake is mainly witnessed in the mature markets, Japan and US are showing the highest levels of adoption, though respondents of the survey highlighted there still are barriers to adoption. For those who are not using 4G currently, a device which doesn’t support 4G or the price being too high were the main reasons.

Nokia creates foundations for launching telcos into the cloud

nokia data center servicesNokia’s Data Center Services division has unveiled plans to launch mobile telcos into the cloud. Plans include a custom-made a multivendor infrastructure to support its transformation consulting services.

These services aim to help telecoms operators re-shape their people and processes for the new cloud-centric comms industry. In a statement it explained that its new managed cloud operations aim to make the introduction of multi-vendor hybrid operations, cloud data centres and the virtualisation of network functions (VNFs) as painless as possible.

The networking vendor is expanding its cloud services portfolio with the launch of three professional services. Nokia Data Center services will offer development and operations (DevOps) services, with a brief to help telcos use cloud technology to launch services as quickly as possible.

Secondly, the Nokia Cloud Transformation Consulting services aim to help operators make the fullest use of telco cloud opportunities. Nokia said it is using expertise rom the Bell Labs Consulting practice to support operators and enterprises in addressing cloud transformation.

Finally the Managed Cloud Operations managed service will help telcos run hybrid operations across hardware, cloudware and application layer management, without the build up of silos of information that have traditionally hamstrung telcos turned comms service providers.

In order to support the data centre services Nokia is creating a design facility in the UK, supported by global delivery depots across the globe. To complement its services portfolio, Nokia has now invited partners, such as global supply chain Sanmina, to focus on Data Center services.

The service is needed because 62% of operators are very likely to rely on network equipment providers for data centre transformation, according to Heavy Reading research figures quoted by Nokia.

Meanwhile, in a related announcement Nokia said it will simplify networks with a new Shared Data Layer, a central point of storage for all the data used by Virtualized Network Functions (VNFs). This could free VNFs from the need to manage their own data, creating so-called stateless VNFs that are simpler and have the capacity for rapid expansion or contraction.

The result is a more flexible, programmable network for 5G that can minimise latency and maximise network speeds in order to cater for the Internet of Things (IoT). The network also becomes more reliable as a failed stateless VNF can instantly activate and provide access to the shared data to maintain seamless service continuity.

Nokia keen to promote its telco cloud portfolio

Nokia cloud service chainFinnish kit vendor Nokia is continuing to promote its nascent cloud offerings for telcos, three months after the launch of its AirFrame datacentre family of products, reports

AirFrame itself is now available as a containerised solution with a built in power and cooling system and Nokia has also added a software-defined storage module. It is supported by a cloud Care Services package, which is comprised of a service management module for resolving VNF faults, as well as a support package specifically for VMWare deployments.

As well as AirFrame Nokia is promoting its OSS Office for Telco Cloud offering, which seems to be more of a strategic consultation service than a physical product. All of this is stitched together by something Nokia is calling Service Chaining, which is a virtualized environment for the delivery of network services.

“Wherever operators are on their cloud transformation journey, Nokia has the solutions and expertise, all the way from strategy to migration to maintenance,” said Deepak Harie, VP of Systems Integration at Nokia Networks. “Our extensive and open cloud portfolio helps operators in making important decisions towards the most efficient processes, services and solutions across all cloud domains. With Nokia Telco Cloud, operators will be able to achieve maximum benefits from telco and IT convergence.”

Essentially Nokia is trying hard to strengthen its credentials as both a cloud player and a full managed service provider for that sector, something its main competitors have already established. You can expand Nokia’s service chain cloud diagram below.

Microsoft signs GE in massive cloud deal

General Electric has signed up to use Microsoft's cloud software

General Electric has signed up to use Microsoft’s cloud software

Microsoft announced this week that it has signed up long-time tech partner GE to its cloud-based productivity software in a multimillion dollar deal.

The move will see GE deploy Microsoft’s cloud productivity suite Office 365 to GE’s more than 300,000 employees in 170 countries.

Jamie Miller, senior vice president and chief information officer of GE said: “As we deepen our investments in employee productivity, Microsoft’s innovative approach to collaboration made Office 365 our first choice for providing scalable productivity tools to our employees worldwide.”

GE said it will integrate a number of its line of business applications with Office 365 and deploy cloud-based email and Skype for Business calling and meetings, real-time document co-authoring, and team collaboration.

“Microsoft and GE share many values in common — openness, transparency, data-driven intelligence and innovation — all of which are driving forces behind Microsoft’s own mission to help people and organizations achieve more,” said John Case, corporate vice president of Microsoft Office. “As one of the most innovative companies in the world, GE understands what it takes to unleash the potential of its employees. We’re delighted GE has selected Office 365 as the productivity and collaboration solution to empower its global workforce.”

GE and Microsoft are longtime technology partner. The two companies have even set up a joint venture together – Caradigm, a company that develops and sells a healthcare technology platform for clinical applications and population management.

Nevertheless, the deal comes at a critical time for the company and is in some ways a validation of Microsoft’s goal of turning its business around from a number of strategic stumbles and focusing on its core strengths in software and the cloud. Earlier this month the company reported it would write off its entire Nokia acquisition and shed about 7,800 jobs in the process, mostly from its phone business.

KT, Nokia launch Internet of Things lab

KT and Nokia said the lab will be a testing ground for IoT innovators

KT and Nokia said the lab will be a testing ground for IoT innovators

Korean telco KT, alongside Nokia Networks, has announced the launch of the country’s first dedicated lab for progressing the development of the internet of things, making good on its MoU pledge at MWC earlier this year, reports

Nokia Networks has slated the lab to be the bedrock of its targeted “Programmable World” project by utilising the convergence of IT and telecoms. It claims small and medium-sized IoT firms looking for advice, expertise and an environment in which to test new products and ideas will be able to make the best use of the lab.

The launch of the lab shows the progress being made in the IoT space, after KT and Nokia signed a memorandum of understanding to develop an IoT lab facility at Mobile World Congress in March. Andrew Cope, Nokia’s head of Korea, said LTE-M (the LTE network enabling M2M communications) is a key basis of the lab’s capabilities, and displayed his pleasure in having the lab ready so soon after the MoU announcement at MWC.

“Executing upon an agreement signed at MWC15, Nokia Networks and KT have taken another step forward on an exciting journey that will culminate in the creation of the ‘Programmable World’ in Korea and beyond,” he said. “After showcasing the world’s first LTE-M for interconnection of sensors, we have now created Korea’s first IoT lab – a solid-point of our commitment to standardise LTE-M and create a strong and sustainable ecosystem.”

Yun Kyoung-Lim, KT’s head of future convergence said the lab’s approach to collaboration in IoT is essential to its development and to seeing its potential realised.

“Together with Nokia Networks, we are leveraging upon the convergence of IT and Telecommunications to hasten our transformation into an ICT powerhouse,” he said. “Furthermore, this lab is a strong iteration of our vision to become the number one player in Korea’s IOT market. Our efforts are aimed at encouraging greater participation by domestic companies, which are a crucial factor in driving the change towards a creative IoT-based economy.”

Microsoft shifts ever further to cloud as it writes off entire Nokia acquisition

Nadella's mobile first, cloud first strategy will centre more on software and cloud services than devices

Nadella’s mobile first, cloud first strategy will centre more on software and cloud services than devices

Software giant Microsoft has announced a ‘restructure’ of its phone hardware business that amounts to a write off of the entire Nokia acquisition, reports

7,800 jobs will be lost, mainly in the phone business and on top of around $800 million in restructuring charges (over $100,000 per head!), Microsoft is recording an impairment charge of $7.6 billion, which is pretty much what Microsoft paidfor Nokia less than two years ago. No wonder Stephen Elop was shown the door.

In the light of this final Nokia disposal it’s hard to view Microsoft’s acquisition as anything other than a complete failure and to derive any positives from Elop’s involvement in the whole sorry saga. The only consolation is that the market had already priced this write-off into Microsoft’s share price, which at time of writing had been unaffected by the announcement.

“We are moving from a strategy to grow a standalone phone business to a strategy to grow and create a vibrant Windows ecosystem including our first-party device family,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. “In the near-term, we’ll run a more effective and focused phone portfolio while retaining capability for long-term reinvention in mobility.”

The acquisition was always a strange one, as at the time Microsoft was still trying to apply its standard Windows business model to Windows Phone – i.e. get people to pay for the license. The problem was that a superior platform in the form of Android was already available for free, and Microsoft only secured Nokia’s loyalty with generous inducements. To then turn around and acquire its main customer was effectively an admission that the licensing model had failed in this case.

It was then assumed that Microsoft planned to make money from the devices themselves, in spite of the fact that the rest of the smartphone industry with the exception of Apple and Samsung was struggling to break even. Inevitably this was soon revealed to be a forlorn quest and Microsoft started supporting other mobile platforms.

Today Microsoft’s approach to mobile is to try to sell software and services such as Office 365 and Skype to all mobile platforms. At the same time Windows 10 has been designed to be one unified platform regardless of device, but with smartphones seemingly relegated to an afterthought.

Here’s Nadiella’s full internal email on the matter, which also touches on recent disposals in other non-core areas such as mapping and advertising:



Over the past few weeks, I’ve shared with you our mission, strategy, structure and culture. Today, I want to discuss our plans to focus our talent and investments in areas where we have differentiation and potential for growth, as well as how we’ll partner to drive better scale and results. In all we do, we will take a long-term view and build deep technical capability that allows us to innovate in the future.

With that context, I want to update you on decisions impacting our phone business and share more on last week’s mapping and display advertising announcements.

We anticipate that these changes, in addition to other headcount alignment changes, will result in the reduction of up to 7,800 positions globally, primarily in our phone business. We expect that the reductions will take place over the next several months.

I don’t take changes in plans like these lightly, given that they affect the lives of people who have made an impact at Microsoft. We are deeply committed to helping our team members through these transitions.

Phones. Today, we announced a fundamental restructuring of our phone business. As a result, the company will take an impairment charge of approximately $7.6 billion related to assets associated with the acquisition of the Nokia Devices and Services business in addition to a restructuring charge of approximately $750 million to $850 million.

I am committed to our first-party devices including phones. However, we need to focus our phone efforts in the near term while driving reinvention. We are moving from a strategy to grow a standalone phone business to a strategy to grow and create a vibrant Windows ecosystem that includes our first-party device family.

In the near term, we will run a more effective phone portfolio, with better products and speed to market given the recently formed Windows and Devices Group. We plan to narrow our focus to three customer segments where we can make unique contributions and where we can differentiate through the combination of our hardware and software. We’ll bring business customers the best management, security and productivity experiences they need; value phone buyers the communications services they want; and Windows fans the flagship devices they’ll love.

In the longer term, Microsoft devices will spark innovation, create new categories and generate opportunity for the Windows ecosystem more broadly. Our reinvention will be centered on creating mobility of experiences across the entire device family including phones.

Mapping. Last week, we announced changes to our mapping business and transferred some of our imagery acquisition operations to Uber. We will continue to source base mapping data and imagery from partners. This allows us to focus our efforts on delivering great map products such as Bing Maps, Maps app for Windows and our Bing Maps for Enterprise APIs.

Advertising. We also announced our decision to sharpen our focus in advertising platform technology and concentrate on search, while we partner with AOL and AppNexus for display. Bing will now power search and search advertising across the AOL portfolio of sites, in addition to the partnerships we already have with Yahoo!, Amazon and Apple. Concentrating on search will help us further accelerate the progress we’ve been making over the past six years. Last year Bing grew to 20 percent query share in the U.S. while growing our search advertising revenue 28 percent over the past 12 months. We view search technology as core to our efforts spanning, Cortana, Office 365, Windows 10 and Azure services.

I deeply appreciate all of the ideas and hard work of everyone involved in these businesses, and I want to reiterate my commitment to helping each individual impacted.

I know many of you have questions about these changes. I will host an employee Q&A tomorrow to share more, and I hope you can join me.