CxO Insight

FutureNet MENA Keynote Speaker Interview: Khalid Murshed, CTIO, e& UAE

In the lead-up to FutureNet Middle East & North Africa, Khalid Murshed, CTIO, e& UAE, talks to FutureNet about what to expect from his keynote presentation at the event, and much more.

 

You are giving a Keynote presentation at FutureNet MENA on 14thMay, titled Future Unleashed: Navigating 5G-Advanced, Multi-Cloud and AI Frontiers. Can you give our readers a sense of what to expect from your presentation?

I’m honored to be delivering the keynote presentation at FutureNet MENA on May 14th. During my keynote, I’ll delve into several pivotal aspects shaping the future of telecommunications.

Firstly, I’ll provide an overview of our current 5G network status, highlighting our achievement in positioning the UAE as the fastest Mobile broadband nation worldwide, as validated by the Ookla Speedtest index. I’ll elaborate on the diverse monetization use cases of 5G and how we’re leveraging this technology beyond mere connectivity to meet the evolving needs of businesses (B2B).

Additionally, I’ll unveil our journey towards 5G-Advanced, shedding light on the innovative use cases it enables. Our commitment to cloud technology will also take center stage as I showcase our multi-cloud transformation journey, demonstrating how we’re transitioning our network and IT workload towards a cloud-native architecture.

Furthermore, I’ll provide insights into our AI-First transformation journey, illustrating the strides we’re making in AI innovation within the UAE. Through real-world examples and case studies, I’ll highlight the transformative potential of AI across various facets of our operations.

Overall, attendees can expect a comprehensive exploration of how we’re navigating the frontiers of 5G-Advanced, multi-cloud, and AI, ultimately driving innovation and shaping the future of telecommunications in the region.

 

There is a lot of debate about the evolution of the Telco ecosystem, how do you think ecosystems can drive growth in future for telcos and how will telcos fit into this changing landscape?

In the evolving landscape of the telecommunications industry, ecosystems play a pivotal role in driving growth and innovation. Telcos, as key players within these ecosystems, are uniquely positioned to leverage collaborative partnerships to thrive in the future. Here’s how ecosystems can drive growth for telcos and how they fit into this changing landscape:

  1. Diversification of Services: Telcos can expand beyond traditional connectivity services by participating in broader ecosystems. By collaborating with technology providers, content creators, and service platforms, telcos can offer value-added services such as content streaming, IoT solutions, and cloud services, thereby diversifying their revenue streams and driving growth. This is why e& has evolved from being a Telco to a Techco to diversify its portfolio of services and products.
  2. Enhanced Customer Experience: Ecosystem partnerships enable telcos to deliver more personalized and seamless customer experiences. By integrating with various service providers and aggregating offerings, telcos can provide customers with bundled solutions tailored to their needs, leading to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty.We have adopted an AI-First approach to enhance and personalize customer services. By leveraging artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies, e& can analyze vast amounts of data to understand customer preferences and behavior, enabling us to deliver more personalized and seamless experiences across all touchpoints.
  3. Innovation and Differentiation: Telcos can harness the collective expertise and resources within ecosystems to drive innovation and differentiation. By collaborating with startups, research institutions, and other ecosystem partners, telcos can co-create innovative solutions and stay ahead of competitors in rapidly evolving markets.We have partnered with and acquired several startups to enhance our portfolio of services. These collaborations allow e& to access cutting-edge technologies and innovative solutions developed by startups, enabling us to differentiate ourselves in the market and stay ahead of the competition.
  4. Access to New Markets: Ecosystem partnerships provide telcos with access to new markets and customer segments. By joining forces with partners operating in adjacent industries or emerging markets, telcos can expand their reach and tap into previously untapped revenue opportunities, driving growth in both existing and new markets.This is why we have developed customized 5G/IoT/Security and cloud use cases in the beyond connectivity era. By tailoring our offerings to specific market needs and partnering with industry leaders in adjacent sectors, e& can penetrate new markets and customer segments, unlocking new revenue opportunities and driving growth.
  5. Adaptation to Industry Trends: In a rapidly changing industry landscape, ecosystems enable telcos to adapt to evolving trends and technologies more effectively. By participating in ecosystem collaborations, telcos can access resources and expertise to navigate challenges such as digital transformation, regulatory changes, and shifts in consumer behavior, ensuring their continued relevance and competitiveness.

Overall, ecosystems serve as catalysts for growth and innovation in the telco industry, empowering telcos to stay agile, relevant, and competitive in an increasingly interconnected world. By embracing collaborative partnerships and leveraging collective strengths, telcos can position themselves for sustained success in the future.

 

You recently launched an excellent white paper, Unleashing the Power of AI. Can you share some insight into how e& UAE is shaping the future of AI in telecommunications and beyond?

We are thrilled to introduce our latest whitepaper, titled “Unleashing the Power of AI: How e& UAE is Shaping the Future of AI in Telecommunications and Beyond.” This comprehensive document represents the culmination of extensive research, innovative strategies, and dedicated efforts, encapsulating our AI journey and e& UAE’s transformative endeavors.

Our whitepaper offers an in-depth perspective into the heart of our AI journey, showcasing the remarkable potential of emerging technologies and the strategic approaches we are implementing. It provides insights into how we are integrating AI and GenAI into our operations, with a particular focus on revolutionizing the telecommunications sector and contributing to the nation’s digital future.

By unveiling our frameworks for Machine Learning and GenAI systems, alongside strategies championed by our teams for seamlessly applying powerful ML and LLMs, we aim to demystify the transformative power of AI. The whitepaper illuminates how AI is reshaping our operations, from enhancing customer experiences to optimizing operations and reducing costs.

I firmly believe that AI is a cornerstone in ensuring a technologically advanced, secure, and sustainable future, with telecommunications serving as the vital infrastructure to deliver on its promise. This whitepaper not only celebrates the achievements of the e& UAE team but also underscores e& group’s conviction that through collaboration, we can harness the immense potential of AI to redefine connectivity and foster opportunity for all.

Furthermore, the document underscores our commitment to responsible AI deployment, emphasizing fairness, transparency, and ethical practices in alignment with the UAE’s visionary goal of becoming a global AI leader by 2031.

For more details on our AI journey, you can access our whitepaper at:

https://www.eand.com/en/news/eand-unveils-blueprint-for-ai-app.html

 

Finally, I would like to ask you about 5G Advanced. What new service opportunities do you envisage with 5G Advanced and how do you expect to monetise the network?

5G Advanced is poised to revolutionize connectivity with its enhanced capabilities, offering a plethora of new service opportunities across various sectors including consumer, IoT, and enterprise. Here’s an overview of the potential opportunities and monetization strategies:

Service Opportunities:

  • Consumer: With 5G-Advanced, consumers can expect ultra-high-definition video streaming, real-time interactive gaming, and immersive augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) experiences, all made possible by higher speeds and lower latency.
  • IoT: The Internet of Things will thrive with 5G-Advanced, enabling massive machine-type communications and supporting a vast number of connected devices with improved energy efficiency and lower costs, facilitated by technologies like eRedcap and Passive-IoT (P-IoT).
  • Enterprise: Businesses stand to benefit from 5G-Advanced applications such as remote control of machinery, smart logistics, and advanced analytics, transforming operations and opening up new revenue streams, thanks to features like low latency, precise positioning, and higher speeds.

Monetization Strategies:

  • Network-as-a-Service (NaaS): Offering tailored network capabilities to businesses on a subscription basis allows them to pay for exactly what they need when they need it, providing flexibility and cost-effectiveness.
  • API Monetization: By creating and selling APIs that enable third-party developers to build applications leveraging the 5G network, revenue can be generated based on their usage, tapping into the burgeoning ecosystem of app developers.
  • Enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB): Providing superior broadband services leveraging 5G-Advanced’s higher data rates and lower latency can be monetized through premium service offerings, catering to users with demands for high-performance connectivity.

These strategies position us to capitalize on the vast potential of 5G-Advanced, ensuring that we not only deliver cutting-edge services but also create sustainable revenue streams in the evolving telecommunications landscape.

 

For more details on our journey with 5G-Advanced, you can access our latest whitepaper at:

https://www.eand.com/en/news/3-jan-2024-etisalat-by-eand-launches-white-paper.html