Identifying opportunities

This is a guest post by one of official bloggers of the Broadband World Forum 2012, Travis Spencer. Travis is CEO of Twobo Technologies, a boutique consulting firm with a focus on telcos and specialising in cloud security, mobile security, and identity management.

At this year’s 12th annual Broadband World Forum, delegates will have the opportunity to attend the collocated Broadband Cloud Summit, which is taking place on October 16th and 17th. This two-day event will give attendees the chance to hear from visionary speakers and panelists about various ways in which the cloud can be used to reduce costs and generate new business opportunities. One of these that attendees should expect to hear more about in particular, is the tremendous opening that digital identity presents. This digital asset is opening up an entirely new economy where organisations can profit from identity information by creating highly personalised products and services. They can exchange this data with other organisations to further enhance their offerings and delight their customers with richer user experiences and increased value. In this emerging economy, identity is the new oil and MNOs are the new sheiks.

By combining identity with cloud services, mobile computing, real-time personalisation, standards-based trust brokering, and a holistic customer view that spans social networks and applications silos, identity management has the potential to become a gigantic profit center for MNOs rather than a cost they must bear. In fact, it is MNOs that are best positioned in the identity economy to fulfill the key role of Identity Providers (IdPs), allowing them to profit from the currency of digital personas. They alone have deployed billions of mobiles, have gone to such pains to verify the identity of people using those sevices, have ongoing billing relationships with their subscribers, and control the silicon that can be used to authenticate them to a high Level of Assurance (LOA). These form a barrier to entry that will prevent almost all other would-be competitors from providing digital identity management as global a service, leaving this central function in the digital identity economy primarily to the MNOs.

While this important place in the market will be fulfilled almost exclusively by operators, it is also really exciting that an entire ecosystem is emerging around them. Just as in nature, the health and success of this network depends on small inhabitants as well as the apex predators; even small startups, such as my company, can profit together with MNOs in this growing habitat of digital identity. By leveraging identity, other smaller players can, for example, create specialised mobile applications, provide API access to data, integrate systems, and provide other innovations that are infeasible without identity. The combination of the cloud, mobile, social, and big identity data opens up a whole new world for all of us.

This is a really exciting time, and I’m eager to discuss it more with you and the other attendees at the upcoming summit in Amsterdam. I’ll be there together with 40 of the leading telco cloud experts from around the world. We’ll be conferring not only about the digital identity economy but also how the cloud provides MNOs with the potential to increase value for their enterprise customers, the impacts these things will have on broadband networks, and strategies and architectures needed to realise our visions. So, please join me next month at the RAI Exhibition and Convention Center for two days of compelling and interesting discussions. In the meantime, to learn more about the summit, have a look through the event’s web site and brochure which have speaker bios, session times, location information, and other helpful details.

Feel free to also share your thoughts and plans beforehand with me on Twitter or with the larger community using the hash sign #BBWF.

See ya all soon 🙂


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