BCE TO ENABLE NEARLY HALF OF WHOLESALE ROAMING REVENUE SETTLEMENT BY 2026 FOR MNOs: KALEIDO INTELLIGENCE
BCE PRESENTS AN UNTAPPED $2 BILLION IN NEW WHOLESALE IoT ROAMING REVENUE OPPORTUNITY TO NETWORK OPERATORS VIA NEW COMMERCIAL MODELS.
29th June 2021, London, UK: A new study from Kaleido Intelligence has found that nearly half (47%) of wholesale roaming traffic will have migrated to the BCE (Billing and Charging Evolution) standard by 2026. The research found that BCE presents operators with an opportunity to monetise low-bandwidth permanent roaming devices and generate over $2 billion annually in untapped wholesale revenues by that time.
According to the research, The Future of Clearing & Settlement – BCE & Blockchain in Roaming 2021, the current TAP (Transferred Account Procedures) mechanism for billing only permits volume-based charging. This means that permanently roaming IoT devices which consume little data, but significant network resource generates only modest revenues for operators, while devices which are effectively silent for long periods are not monetised.
However, BCE enables the implementation of new commercial models for roaming, such as charging on a per IMSI (International Mobile Subscriber Identity) per day basis (where records would be combined into a single monthly report), volume-based charging or threshold-based charging. For example, this allows differential charging per GB depending on whether aggregated traffic is LTE or NB-IoT. It can also support use cases where the wholesale amount is a fixed charge regardless of the usage or number of devices connected
BCE DEPLOYMENTS TO BE DRIVEN BY TIER-1 MNOs
Kaleido’s research found that deployments would be driven in the first instance by multinational Tier 1 operators with high volumes of roaming traffic.
Dr Windsor Holden, Principal Research Analyst at Kaleido observed: “While operators can deploy BCE in-house, the most cost-effective and efficient option in most cases would be to partner with a data clearinghouse. MNOs will not have the visibility on traffic or the mechanisms to bill for the different types of network usage without clearing house advanced analytics and reporting. Given the continuing trend towards managed services, not least around the cost savings involved from employing dedicated specialists, most operators are likely to opt to maintain a relationship with data clearing houses.”
The research found that while IoT would be the primary use base for BCE post-deployment, it would enable the migration of both data roaming and SMS to BCE, as the pricing structures are not complex and, in most cases, the home operator does not use the TAP files.
AUTOMATED SETTLEMENT DRIVES $5 BILLION COST SAVINGS FOR MNOs
The research also explored the potential for blockchain deployments in the clearing and settlement space, particularly with regards to increasing transparency, settlement efficiency and reducing fraud. It found that there was an increasing demand for DLT (Distributed Ledger Technology)-agnostic solutions and highlighted the GSMA’s efforts to create a modular architecture to underpin a variety of settlement solutions.
Kaleido predicts that automated settlement in wholesale roaming will enable a cumulative cost savings of $5 billion over the next 5 years.
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