Hardware and software vendors aren't the only ones hoping to make a big splash with global carriers at Mobile World Congress next week. Verizon today announced a new service offering aimed at international carriers that it hopes will be a significant new business initiative. (See Verizon Launches Exponent as New Carrier Services Platform.)
Exponent is a new platform through which Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) will sell software and service capabilities to international carriers, including its Internet of Things (IoT), digital media services, big data/analytics, cloud services and more, to enable those carriers to quickly offer new services. The company will be showing off its new Exponent product line in Barcelona next week.
Light Reading couldn't connect with Verizon executives but Eric Goodness, research vice president at Gartner, says Exponent represents a great channel to let Verizon earn revenue on a number of its many acquisitions, including Telogis and Fleetmatics in the IoT space, and AOL (and soon Yahoo) in digital media and content. (See Verizon Buys Big Into IoT With $2.4B Fleetmatics Deal.)
"If you are a small carrier in Asia or Latin America and you don't know which direction to turn in terms of how to build out an IoT platform to offer fleet management, that is what they are looking to do," Goodness says. "You want to develop content or media services and you don't know where to turn? They have the street cred of being a national CSP with these businesses and being able to extend AOL to help a smaller CSP build out digital marketing or content services or an IoT platform -- that's what this enables."
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As such, Exponent helps Verizon build its own business acumen, across a much bigger global footprint, while leveraged the many acquisitions the company has made in recent years, particularly in the IoT space. Those include a 50% share of nPhase, Hughes Telematics, the two mentioned above plus, more recently, Sensity and LQD. (See Verizon Buys Smart City Kiosk Player, US Giants Carve Out Role in the Industrial IoT and Verizon's Sensity Buy Brightens IoT Strategy.)
"As carriers around the world seek to compete with new, emerging technology players and OTT service providers, Exponent provides a cost-effective way for them to leverage Verizon’s investment and experience to diversify and help grow their revenue streams while relying on our tradition of innovation, reliability and excellence," says Guru Pai, chief product officer at Verizon, who was quoted in the Verizon press release.
That same release listed the range of services Exponent will offer, to include:
- Big Data and Artificial Intelligence Platform, to help service providers use their own data and apply machine learning and artificial intelligence to provide better service and find new business opportunities.
- IoT Platform, to offer an integrated set of capabilities, "from managing all end user devices and connections to a developer and customer marketplace" to accelerate IoT use cases.
- Media Services Platform, using "cross-platform video and advanced media services" to let network operators offer video content including linear TV and OTT video.
- Internet Services Delivery Platform, to enable communications service providers to "create value-based pricing and consumer engagement plans, and deliver dynamic network optimization capabilities through a simple management interface."
- Cloud Computing and Storage Platform, a container-based architecture that enables new services that can be secured and delivered at scale.
"This is something they can do today -- the platform for IoT, for example, is the Verizon ThingSpace platform they have today, and their media services platform is the same platform they leverage for Go," says Gartner's Goodness. "All the platforms exist today; it's a matter of productizing those platforms and extending them out to non-competitive CSPs."
— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading