You’ve heard the phrase if you can’t beat them, join them. Well, telcos are taking this literally as many are shifting their focus from battling OTT services to partnering with them. In fact, an interest in providing OTT-type services is on the rise, with 36% of mobile operators partnering with OTT providers last year.
So, just why are telcos uniting with OTT services? Because competing with the features and competitive prices of OTT apps is nearly impossible for operators, but a partnership can prove to benefit their bottom line, as well as offer a few awesome perks to the people who keep them in business -- the consumer!
First, let's talk about the different types of partnerships and why those might be beneficial:
Much like the co-branded app Voxox is collaborating on with VTC Intecom, operators can partner with OTT services to create an app that promotes both businesses. Co-branded apps are a great option as they can offer the benefits of an expanded network for users and providers. For example, a co-branded app may allow users the ability to sign in with credentials from their telco, OTT service or social media accounts, or search a wider net of contacts.
White Label Partnership
If a co-branded app isn’t quite right for either the OTT service or the operator, a white labeled application is another partnership solution. Not only will consumers reap the benefits of a feature-rich app, but operators will also be able to design and launch apps quickly – saving both time and money!
Next, let's touch on the benefits that an OTT partnership can yield for all parties involved:
1. Enhanced User Experience
When it comes to creating a successful product, user experience is key, which is why telcos and OTT services are joining forces to bring users the best of both worlds. Ease of sign-in, expanded contact list, free and low-cost calling and texting, and loads of features like a virtual assistant, call forwarding, language translation, and custom hold music (just to name a few!) are a winning combination for users.
2. Service & Innovation Combo
What’s the easiest way for a telco and an OTT app to create service innovation? By taking the best bits of both and rolling them into one. Telcos offer steady service and an expansive network, while OTT services offer unique features and competitive rates; put them together and you have a feature-rich ultra-reliable service at your fingertips!
3. Reduced Operation Cost
With lost revenue and bandwidth expenditure being the big issues behind the telco-OTT services war, operators can rest in peace knowing that a rev-share partnership will boost their bottom line. By joining forces with an OTT service, operators are reclaiming lost revenue and reducing their operation costs by leveraging the strengths of OTT services.
4. Customer Retention & Growth
Many consumers turn to OTT services for their messaging and calling needs because traditional mobile plans are generally more expensive, and sometimes out of their budget. For those who rely on OTT services to stay in touch, an OTT partner is the only way telcos can grow users and add revenue from a demographic that may not subscribe to more expensive data plans.
5. Profit Boost
By offering richer services and expanding their customer base through collaborative projects, it’s no doubt telcos and OTT services will see an increase in profits when they team up together – a win-win for both parties!
As more and more major players in mobile telecommunications begin to recognize the benefits of an OTT partner, we continue to see an increase in OTT and telco partnerships and expect more innovation and technologies to reach our mobile devices in the near future.
Do you think your business could benefit from an OTT partner, whether it's a co-branded or a white-labeled application? Are you a consumer excited for mobile phone and messaging services innovation? Sound off in the comments below or connect with us on social media – Facebook and Twitter.