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9 Telecommunication Trends That’ll Define 2024 and Beyond

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2023 was a transformative year for many industries as tech advancements and user behaviors changed significantly.

 

From the rise of generative AI to the widespread availability of 5G, this year set the stage for the future of telecommunications in 2024 and beyond.

 

We expect some technologies and behaviors we saw this year to continue in 2024 as impactful telecommunication trends that change how we operate and communicate.

So, what trends will we see in telecommunications in the new year? Keep reading to discover how we see the future taking shape.

Key Trends in Telecommunication for 2024

9 Top Trends In Telecommunications

 

Every year, some trends emerge and become industry standards while others fade away. We expect 2024 to be a landmark year where several notable trends find valuable utility and make a lasting impact throughout telecommunications.

Only time will tell, but we can confidently explore some key trends already taking shape and poised to transform telecom again. Let’s dive in.

1. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (AI)

We saw AI and ML grow by significant leaps in 2023, and now, many industries, telecom included, are exploring how to apply these advancements throughout their operations.

AI will undoubtedly be one of the most impactful telecom trends for 2024. The initial excitement has started to settle down, and specific use cases are now being explored, all while the underlying technologies continue to grow. Some possible AI and ML use cases for telecom are:

  • Predictive maintenance: AI models excel at identifying underlying patterns in data that may be overlooked by even highly trained personnel. Predictive analytics and maintenance is one way this unique ability can be leveraged, giving engineers and technicians more significant insights into when hardware and software need attention to avoid downtime. Once deployed, these tools can save time, reduce time, and improve overall performance.
  • Network optimization: Similar to predictive analytics’ ability to identify patterns, purpose-built models can identify choke points and inefficiencies throughout a company’s network. From there, recommendations can be made, or traffic can be routed on-demand to better utilize available resources. We’ll likely see a new level of optimization automation that creates lower-latency services.
  • Enhanced customer service: We’ve already seen advanced chatbots in nearly every industry, and for a good reason: they help customers find answers easier and faster. Older chatbots often fail to understand inquiries and offer dynamic support, but now, many basic to intermediate support issues can be solved without a human agent. Customers can find resolutions faster, while your agents can focus on more complex issues.

We scratched the surface with these above use cases so far and they’ll likely become even more helpful in 2024. Of course, we may even be surprised by brand new utilities becoming available as AI and ML advance.

2. Widespread 5G Availability and Internet-of-Things

telecommunications trends 2024

We can safely say the 5G rollout has been completed, but there’s still plenty of room for improvements. Many providers say they have nationwide coverage, but one independent report indicates 62% of those in the US have 5G service with consistent speeds at or above 100 Mbps.

There’s still room for improvement, both in expanding infrastructure and exploring new applications. Industrial IoT applications are currently evolving and will continue to do so in 2024 and into the future, such as:

  • Ultra-Reliable Low Latency Communication (URLLC): URLLC is a defined use case class describing the minimum required 5G networks to offer high reliability, low latency, and support for low data rates. The high speeds of 5G aren’t always needed, but reliability and low latency are necessary. For example, URLLC can be used for hypothetical self-driving fleets may be deployed that may need to communicate basic data but demand reliability, like location or traffic data.
  • Massive Machine-Type Communication (mMTC): This exciting use case is a specific class of 5G that can support up to 1 million low-powered, low-cost, low-complexity devices per square mile. These IoT devices can include monitoring systems, embedded sensors, and smart meters. Many industries can benefit from serving a large amount of simpler IoT devices that provide added utility to the overall operations and telecommunications needs to serve those customers.

Rolling out 5G for end users was only the beginning. We’re entering the era of fully exploring what’s possible with the upgraded network.

3. Selling through Virtual Trade Shows

One of the valuable telecommunications trends 2024 will be the advanced utility of virtual selling techniques to help telecoms generate new sales cost-effectively. Virtual selling is a blend of different technologies and sales techniques that enable more flexible and data-driven ways to reach new customers.

Effective Ways Telecoms Generate New Sales?

Telecommunications providers can leverage a wide range of data and advertising platforms to create cost-effective sales strategies that evolve over time.

Providers looking to serve customers in remote areas or expand into new markets can use virtual sales to find and onboard new users with tactful, scalable methods.

Some Virtual Selling Ideas for the telecommunications industry can include:

  • Personalized Sales Consultations: Providing personalized, one-on-one virtual sales consultations to understand customer needs and offer tailored telecom solutions.
  • Virtual Training for Resellers: Conducting virtual training sessions for resellers or partners, educating them on the features and benefits of telecom products for more effective sales.
  • Cross-Selling and Upselling: Using virtual platforms to cross-sell and upsell additional telecom services like international calling packages or data plans.
  • Virtual Trade Shows and Events: Participating in or hosting virtual trade shows and events to showcase telecom products and services to a broader audience.
  • Data-Driven Sales Strategies: Leveraging data analytics from virtual selling tools to refine sales strategies and target potential customers more effectively.

These are some use cases that represent how virtual selling and monetizing actions can be strategically applied in the telecommunications sector, focusing on efficiency, reach, and customer engagement without specifying any particular brand.

For B2B sales, telecommunications companies can create virtual product demos to showcase UCaaS products, mobile apps, or backend administration for white-label products.

Some aspects of these sales can be automated, such as scheduling, while having pre-made demo environments available makes this a time-efficient process.

4. Networks Will Continue to Evolve

The rise of high-performance satellite internet networks like Starlink will continue to change the way consumers access the Internet in hard-to-reach areas. This will bring more underserved consumers online.

Additionally, we may even see a transition from networks being on-demand to a more as-a-service model. eSIM technology is already driving this change forward.

What does this mean? Simply put, consumers may no longer be tied to a single network or operator, but rather the “service” itself, giving them reliable coverage when and where they need it.

5. Apple Finally Commits to RCS

It’s no secret big tech is working towards an integrated future. After all, we live in the API economy now where integration is everything.

Of course, some companies, like Apple, have tried to fight this trend. However, even Apple threw in the towel on its proprietary messaging service when it agreed to embrace the Rich Communication Services (RCS) messaging standard.

While seemingly small, this represents an important step in the right direction as it brings iMessage-style features for messaging between Apple and Android users.

6. Cybersecurity in the Telecommunications Industry

Data breaches are costly, with the global average cost of a breach reaching up to US$4.45 million, up from 15% compared to 3 years ago. Organizations across all industries must invest in bolstering security, including those providing telecom services.

A data breach or other cybersecurity incident affecting a telecommunications provider can be highly complex and costly, as compromised services may enable other attacks or create new attack vectors for the provider’s business customers.

Organizations must take every precaution to safeguard their customers’ data and services from bad actors. That’s why one crucial telecommunications trend for 2024 will be increasing investments in cybersecurity talent, services, and systems. Other trends on this list also apply to cybersecurity, such as new use cases for AI and network diversity.

Preventing a breach or stopping one before it escalates further can save your company from incurring costs and protect your reputation.

7. Virtual Reality and The Metaverse

Whether the dreams of a metaverse will become reality remains to be seen, but virtual reality experiences with online activity are going strong. Online VR games require low-latency, high-speed connections; otherwise, the user experience will quickly suffer.

Optimizing Network Infrastructure for Enhanced VR Experiences

Telecommunications Trends Body

Apple recently announced a new headset that may expand the use cases beyond gaming, and it will need fast, reliable services for its Internet-based utilities.

Telecommunication providers will need to enhance services and coverage in order to meet these demands. The high speeds of 5G may serve as a solution in some scenarios while upgrading existing telecommunications infrastructure will help improve traditional services.

8. Network Disaggregation and Virtualization

One of the critical new trends in telecommunication is a push for disaggregation and virtualization at the telecom provider level. This trend has the potential to dramatically transform the world of telecommunications by maximizing available infrastructure and enhancing uptime.

There are plenty of technologies working towards this goal, but two key technologies to highlight are:

  1. Network Functions Virtualization (NFV): The technology decouples hardware and network functions. For example, routers, load balancers, and firewalls are often handled by physical hardware. NFV aims to virtualize this hardware to run on standard hardware like servers used for cloud computing. The possible benefits are cutting costs, improving scalability, and faster deployment.
  2. Software-Defined Networking (SDN): SDN uses software controllers and APIs to direct traffic on the network while also communicating with the underlying hardware. The goal is to separate the network’s control and infrastructure to enable a higher degree of automation and management efficiency.

9. Network Diversity

Diversifying telecom networks to enhance uptime, resilience to natural disasters, and provide reliable services is a critical focus of telecom. We saw plenty of recommendations for signing up with two or more providers in an attempt to improve communication reliability, but this puts the focus on carrier diversity — not network diversity.

True network diversity depends on choosing the right provider that has an ongoing focus on diversifying your services in the back end. Building redundant routes to your location, staying aware of any outages to take immediate action, and minimizing any user-affecting issues are at the core of network diversity.

While we think having a focus on diversifying networks to improve reliability, make sure you shift away from the 2023 trend of signing up with multiple carriers and instead focus on interrogating your existing carrier about how they’re working on network diversity.

We’re Driving the Future of Telecommunications

Acrobits has a long track record of pushing technology forward in our white-label and end-user softphones. We’re always exploring how new and evolving technologies can be used to enhance our offering.

Ready to future-ready your communications? Reach out to us today to learn more about how we can prepare you for 2024 and beyond.

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