ABI predicts optimization service market will reach $2.5 billion by 2017
The market opportunity for optimization as a managed service is estimated to reach $2.5 billion by 2017, or 10 percent of the total mobile network managed service market, according to ABI Research.
The increase in network traffic complexity over the next five years means there will be a lot more data traveling through wireless and fixed-line networks, and something must be used to ensure quality of service across network infrastructure. That is where optimization services come in.
ABI noted that mobile network optimization is usually offered as a limited term engagement either at the start of a network lifecycle or as a consulting engagement during normal operations to improve key performance indicators. With the increasing focus on customer experience management, optimization will need to be done on an ongoing basis.
"With the shift from voice to data services, the rise of tiered plans, the increasing focus on customer and service level management, and the growing complexity of networks and tools, there is a need for optimization to change with the times," said Aditya Kaul, practice director of mobile networks at ABI.
"Optimization can be seen to be moving from the network domain into the services management and customer experience domains, with each of those eventually being treated as a part of what is being termed as professional or managed services for mobile operators," Kaul added.
With the growth of self-organizing networks, managed services are expected to see consolidation, especially in the network layer. While a self-organizing network should automate the initial network configuration, the dynamic optimization element that oversees end-to-end performance management should remain in the hands of operators and managed services vendors, ABI explained.
The research firm expects the large infrastructure vendors to start providing dedicated monitoring and optimization on an on-going basis from their global network operations center. While some of the network optimization elements are already provided today, the service and customer experience optimization is where the opportunities lie.
As an example of the growing optimization market, ConnectWise recently teamed with network optimization firm Akamai to optimize the delivery of its ConnectWise Cloud service by eliminating bandwidth bottlenecks. ConnectWise explained that the addition of Akamai assists with application delivery by having less network lag time and storing content closer to the end user's internet connection.
Optimization will be a necessary part of any enterprise's mobile and cloud strategy. Service providers that take note will thrive; those that don't will have a less than optimal future.