The LTE World Summit is the premier 4G event for the telecoms industry and is taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands. Frédéric Ruciak, EVP of strategy for Bouygues Telecom will be speaking on a panel dedicated to maximizing revenue from LTE, taking place on one of the conference.
To what extent have you virtualised your network and how important will NFV be in the future?
We have not yet implemented NFV in our network but we think it may be an opportunity in the future. The main benefits will be to reduce costs in our core network and to improve time to market. We think robust and powerful solutions may go live within a three- to five-year timeframe. We’ll be cautious in terms of operations and QoS, because we may potentially move from single vendor platforms, with clear commitment, to layered environments, where we may have interoperability issues and multiple responsibilities.
VoLTE: Is it necessary?
There are three main benefits for VoLTE
- High quality for voice communication and reduced delay for call setup
- Voice and LTE data communication simultaneously
- Voice communication on LTE frequency band
These three advantages might be of different value for different operators in their specific markets. The first one is the most questionable, compared to WBAMR. The second one will most probably become mandatory as customer experience will mix more and more voice and data communications.
Bouygues Telecom has built an LTE network using 800, 1800 and 2600MHz spectrum. We will rely on this to establish voice communications using VoLTE, especially on the 800MHz band we are already pushing in dense urban areas, thus providing, along with 1800MHz spectrum, indoor penetration for both voice and data services and bolster our position on the network for the future of the digital life of our customers.
What, in your opinion, will truly define 5G?
We are probably a little far from 5G, as we are still in the 4G and 4G+ rollout phase, though we have already national coverage. We could expect many things from 5G: lower latency, higher throughput, QoS improvement but also CAPEX and OPEX reduction e.g. dynamic configuration management and an easier way to implement our base stations in the field, such as footprint reduction, small antennas and backhaul facilities.
In what ways is LTE enabling you to innovate on pricing?
The French market is not in a situation favourable to sophisticated pricing strategies. The race for the LTE customer base is more geared to spreading 4G with no premium price over 3G, rather than once again skimming the most advanced customers to gain €5 from them.