After disrupting some of the world’s biggest industries including banking, finance, hospitality, international remittance and more, there is no doubt that blockchain will revolutionize the telecommunications industry and provide much better outcomes for customers and stakeholders. Telecommunications and blockchain technology together project a promising future trajectory for communications to move forward.
A centralized operational structure of telecom companies creates various inefficiencies such as inaccurate billing, expensive usage fees, and security issues, which all increase costs for customers. Customers are usually subjected to inflexible terms and plans. These create hurdles in the telecom industry’s revenue.
New trends will need to be addressed by the telecom sector such as the growth of mobile connectivity, IoT and security of networks. However, the current billing and operational structure may not be well-suited for the IoT boom.
The current mobile network providers offer a range of services but are inflexible in its packaging and distribution. Telecom customers are often locked into long-term plans in the current business model.
Moreover, revenues of telecom sectors have been declining due to rigid operational structures and over-the-top (OTT) companies that provide apps such as WhatsApp, Viber decreasing the traffic for telecom companies.
Decentralized mobile networks aims to create a secure and trusted environment for telecom services and to narrow down the global digital divide by leveraging Distributed Ledger Technology (DTL).
A decentralized mobile network integration into the cutting-edge telecom, messengers, IoT and 5G technologies is a breakthrough in decentralized infrastructure.
It may eliminate many vulnerabilities to which the current system is exposed such as:-
No Fee Model
Several telecom providers have come up with a model for communications where subscribers are not only are free of fees but even get rewarded for engagement. This idea comes through digital advertising. Essentially, subscribers become token holders and don’t need to pay anything for mobile service and data, while telecom companies receive revenue from ads.
Roaming Free Travel
Travelers often face increased fees when abroad because they usually have only two options: either to purchase a prepaid local SIM card or to turn on roaming and roaming is something where you don’t want to spend on.
The decentralization of mobile and data services erases boundaries between countries, providing users with communication opportunities in accordance with the trend of total globalization. It proves to be efficient than usual prepaid plans for travelers, since the acquisition cost decreases while average revenue per user and lifetime value would increase.
Users are becoming more and more concerned about their data’s safety. Large social media corporations allegedly sell users’ data where people are getting increasingly aware of what they let the internet know about themselves. However, blockchain brings privacy to a new level where private keys do not let third-parties access anyone else’s messages, making users’ activity completely invisible.
Unused data trading
Another use case for blockchain in telecommunications is the trading of unused data. According to Ericsson ConsumerLab’s research, “Consumers become increasingly aware of the amount of unused data they are left with each month,” which means there must be an option to make benefits out of leftovers.
According to Deloitte’s research, telecoms lose approx $38.1 billion every year due to fraudulent schemes. Fraud in telecommunications usually occurs either when people use fake identification to purchase services or are left vulnerable when roaming. Blockchain implementation could change where the mobile device would be tied to the owner’s identity. Instead of broadcasting the International Mobile Subscriber Identity, the owner’s public key would be used. Neither operator nor any other third party would know the private key.
Several devices interact over the internet, and the risk of some stranger’s device interrupting the communication is quite high. No one wants it to be exposed to outsiders. Blockchain would create a safer environment for data transmission also help in reducing expenses associated with the maintenance of IoT.
Secured Bill Payments
Even if mobile carriers remain simple and don’t support any blockchain solutions, paying bills via the internet is still an option for many. Blockchain allows for safer transactions as you will find many payment services based on distributed ledger technology.
Telecom providers and subscribers still struggle with roaming, high fees, risk of fraud, privacy issues and much more, decentralization could be the key to solving those issues. Although blockchain implementation still faces noticeable resistance among the masses, blockchain technology can solve most if not all the challenges faced by the telecom companies.