Roam Like at Home brings many benefits to consumers – but it raises challenges for MVNOs. They need to be able to take more control of their roaming agreements and to build partnerships to serve the most popular destinations. This means that MVNOs need the operational flexibility to establish new agreements and the platform to support new roaming solutions.
As might have been expected, the topic of Roam Like at Home was hotly debated at the recent MVNOs Europe conference in London. A number of MVNOs expressed concern that, while the end of roaming charges within the European Union is great for consumers, it’s potentially less so for MVNOs. That’s because MNOs have no obligation to reduce wholesale prices, which means that MVNOs will be hard-pressed to compete against the established players.
As a result of these “unintended consequences”, as one panellist put it, there’s considerable uncertainty regarding the provision of international services and some MVNOs will likely have to rethink their business models. Of course, there’s no way of knowing how this will pan out - but it’s crystal clear that MVNOs need to take defensive steps.
This means that MVNOs may have to consider extending their range of roaming offers. Many MVNOs are dependent on their host MNO for roaming capabilities and agreements, but there’s nothing to stop MVNOs forging new relationships and partnerships, or from taking advantage of multi or dual-IMSI solutions that can help them stay competitive.
For example, they can partner with specialist roaming providers or connect to roaming hubs that can both extend their reach and also enable them to find better wholesale offers to key destinations. To make the most of this, they will need to understand the mix of roaming traffic and to understand which destinations are the most popular – as well as which have the highest costs. Carefully selecting the most important destinations and choosing the right partners to reach them will allow MVNOs to make the right choices for ensuring that they remain competitive.
Of course, MVNOs also need to know that their operational systems can support the selection of new roaming partners. With Digitalk, this flexibility is inherent in our systems. Because Mobile Cloud is a comprehensive MVNE as a Service solution, MVNOs can move from light to full MVNO capabilities, quickly and easily, allowing them to take control of their roaming arrangements and to ensure that they can tackle competitive pressures more effectively.
With a growing number of business challenges emerging in the market, such as Roam Like at Home, it’s time to make sure you have the right systems and processes in place to meet them head on and to enable the agility you will need to succeed. This means having the ability to control key service aspects, such as roaming, which have a direct impact on margin and profit. With less flexibility to change wholesale prices, operational efficiency become even more important than ever.
If you are struggling to keep pace, then you need to find out how to capitalise on additional capabilities that will help you drive down costs and increase efficiency – while making sure you target your efforts in the right direction. Don’t let the market overwhelm you – be ready to make the right decisions and to pre-empt changes. Get in touch to find out how Digital can help.