Contributed by Don Alusha, Senior Analyst, ABI Research.
Communications Service Providers (CSPs) are making good progress to implement Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) as they seek to modernize their networks and diversify their revenue streams. At present, AI and ML technologies are seeing increased adoption on a per use-case, per domain basis – a natural development given the heterogeneous technology systems that characterizes the industry. For example, the bulk of existing commercial activities fall under customer management, intelligent user interfaces, sales and marketing. Increasingly, the question for CSPs is how to kickstart a transition towards networks that are more automated to achieve operational efficiency and rapid service onboarding.
Narrow AI may not be conducive to the creation of a new ‘intelligent’ ecosystem. That is, an interconnected environment with uniform business connections and centralized sponsorship underpinned by standardized data formats and AI telco standards. On the one hand, AI opens new opportunities from operational efficiency and top-line growth perspectives. On the other hand, the industry may have to step out of the ‘bounded rationality’ phenomenon highlighted in ABI Research’s studies. End to end harmonized AI platforms are required to drive data sharing and universal cognitive solutions across multiple teams and/or platforms.
A Far-Reaching AI strategy
Implementation of AI/ML in telecoms is characterized by an evolutionary singular strategy; namely, one tweaked and fine-tuned in line with specific use cases typically associated with their own solutions partners, dedicated departments or roadmaps. For example, customer services reduce human involvement by using AI in chatbot functionality. To that end, technology providers are establishing an adoption roadmap wherein use case specific actions taken now yield short term desired outcomes, but also have an effect that radiates out for years to come towards a wider AI stratagem. Almost all network equipment vendors (NEPs) have announced a roadmap to set up a global AI accelerator to drive AI adoption in telecoms. NEPs are using narrow AI use cases in several different product lines, including radio equipment.
AI and Human Capital
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