Telecom Industry Tech Trends: Shaping the Future in 2024
As digital transformation continues to evolve, the telecom industry stands on the cusp of a technological revolution. With continuous development in 5G infrastructure, 2024 will unfold a series of breakthrough innovations to redefine telecommunication. From the rollout of the 5G extended version to cyber resilience and sustainable green telecom networks, the telecom industry has become one of the fastest-growing markets in recent years, ushering in a new era of connectivity, speed, and performance.
The global telecom market is projected to reach $2,467.01 billion by 2028, growing at a CAGR of 5.4%
Our blog aims to shed light on five trends that are set to revolutionize the telecom sector, highlighting the key areas for development and offering insights about investment scenarios for stakeholders as the technology evolves further.
Trend #1: 5G Expansion and Adoption
5G has become the real game changer in this digital era by providing greater security and stability that was previously impossible. 5G telecommunication is expected to dramatically expand its connectivity as the number of connected devices is anticipated to grow to 51.9 billion by 2025.
Telecom offers 5G as a Standalone (SA) service to meet this demand. Unlike 5G Non-Standalone (NSA), 5G SA supports ultra-density device deployments, a prerequisite for resource-intensive applications ranging from smart buildings to autonomous vehicles. In addition to expanding coverage, it provides better security, operational agility, enhanced network connectivity, and network slicing.
According to the GSM Association, 5G networks will have more than 1.1 billion subscribers worldwide by 2025. Recently, enterprises increasingly turned to private wireless networks, emphasizing premium connectivity solutions for B2B and B2C customers. The rapid proliferation of 5G has also accelerated private wireless network adoption in various verticals such as healthcare, manufacturing, and retail.
The convergence of 5G indoor wireless and private networks paves the way for businesses to improve network efficiency and performance while reducing deployment, maintenance, and management costs. Looking ahead to 2024, Advanced 5G deployment will significantly impact the entertainment and education sectors by facilitating extensive support for interactive applications.
Trend #2: Network disaggregation and virtualization (SDN & NFV)
Network disaggregation and virtualization are emerging as compelling telecom trends embraced by telecom providers in recent years due to the ever-increasing adoption of connected devices, applications, and services. It has the potential to elevate network security, leading to unprecedented agility at reduced costs.
SDN (Software Defined Network) focuses on separating a network’s data and control planes, enabling efficient network management, resource utilization, and enhanced network agility. Network Virtualization Function (NFV) virtualizes network services, including routers, firewalls, and load balancers previously deployed on proprietary hardware.
NFV and SDN have become an integral part of 5G network deployment as they help to meet the performance requirements of 5G, offering scalability, flexibility, and interoperability. The convergence of SDN and NFV can unveil the true potential of 5G, managing the entire network holistically and effectively by providing enhanced network services.
Case Study: Explore how iLink optimizes service management for leading telecommunication providers.
Trend #3: The Symbiosis of Edge and Cloud Computing
Over the past few years, we have witnessed the paradigm shift from centralized cloud storage to distributed edge computing platforms for rapid data processing. Due to the stringent latency requirements, there needs to be more than a centralized cloud platform to handle the ever-growing data consumption from IoT devices. Gartner estimates that “75% of enterprises will process the data at the edge over traditional centralized cloud infrastructure”.
Edge computing has the transformative potential to support real-time data processing across distributed data centers, ensuring higher bandwidth and ultra-low latency communications to gain more supremacy over data transmission. Furthermore, the integration of SDN in edge-cloud will become a promising framework that helps to reduce energy consumption and maintain QoS requirements in complex IoT-driven applications.
“The global data consumption over telecom networks will get tripled due to increased video traffic, from 3.4 million petabytes in 2022 to 9.7 million petabytes in 2027.”
Edge orchestration empowered by edge cloud and mobile edge computing (MEC) has become more prevalent with the rapid proliferation of 5G networks. It helps to ensure seamless integration and effective utilization of resources by providing immense processing power required for mission-critical applications such as video streaming, smart cities, virtual reality, and augmented reality. Despite its vast benefits, ensuring the real-time correlation of multiple network domains for edge orchestration is challenging.
Trend #4: Cybersecurity and Resilience
Telecom has become one of the most vulnerable sectors due to its ever-increasing adoption of connected devices. Hence, employing sophisticated cybersecurity protocols and comprehensive security measures is crucial to protect data integrity, reliability, and privacy. In the telecom landscape, a cyber resilience strategy is not just a fleeting trend but imperative.
It encompasses people, processes, and technology that establish resilience against cyberattacks, providing a competitive advantage to organizations. It also incorporates regular risk assessments, employee training, intrusion detection methods, and access controls to help confront these threats.
As of 2023, “The global average cost per data breach is estimated around $4.45 million, an increase from $4.35 million in 2022.”
Developing an incident response plan is essential to ensure seamless business continuity and mitigate potential threats proactively, even in the face of attacks. As a result, it helps prevent significant ramifications such as financial loss and reputational damage, increasing stakeholder confidence. Moreover, telecom operators strive to stay abreast of emerging technologies such as blockchain and advanced encryption techniques to enhance security and customer trust.
Trend #5: Sustainability and Green Telecom Networks
The telecom industry has taken sustainability initiatives in recent years, considering the environmental impact. With AI and machine learning, telecom companies focus more on optimizing power consumption and sustainable supply chain solutions. AI and ML automate the network orchestration of supply chain operations to increase efficiency while reducing carbon footprints. Telecom industries also leverage circular economy principles that focus on waste reduction, recycling, and reuse of materials and equipment, minimizing CO2 emissions.
According to the GSMA report 2022, “5G network providers are aiming towards reducing their carbon footprint over the next decade to achieve 44% global telecom revenue, committing to mobile net-zero path by 2050”.
Green Telecom Networks (GTN) has garnered much stakeholder attention for better energy resources. GTN is the practice of implanting energy-efficient technologies in various aspects, such as smart network design, utilization of renewable resources, and environmentally acceptable consumables.
How does iLink Digital help Telecoms to leverage technology?
As the demand for high-speed connectivity continues to increase, keeping pace with the latest technological trends is crucial for stakeholders in the telecom industry. The future of telecommunications is expected to focus on connectivity and complexity issues, offering disruptive solutions for innovative decisions to survive in the market.
With our broad spectrum of expertise and pragmatic approach, iLink Digital, a leader in digital transformation, helps organizations reimagine their business models by embracing an array of cutting-edge tools and technologies to meet rising customer demand and expectations, gaining a competitive advantage in the dynamic telecom ecosystem.