European Communications – Opinion: Under-The-Top disruption has arrived, but it doesn’t have to be a threat to telcos

By Bengt Nordstrom, Co-Founder and CEO of independent telecoms business consultancy Northstream

Over the past decade, telcos have faced tough competition and disruption from OTT players who’ve launched cloud-based voice and messaging services to rival the telcos’ own.

While these services have eroded telcos’ traditional voice and messaging revenues, they’ve also bolstered the telcos’ primary business today – data.

Now a new challenge to operators is gathering pace: Under-The-Top (UTT) disruption.

These are new initiatives and technologies aimed at operators’ core business of connectivity.

A UTT initiative can stem from anywhere, but the prevalent trend is for technology giants like Google and Facebook to test out new connectivity-related business models and trial new technologies.

How much of a threat are these UTTs to operators’ core business?

Do they threaten operators’ very existence: or are they merely a wake-up call to encourage operators to get back to work?

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