The telecommunication sector plays a prominent role in the global economy representing 2.3% of global GDP and a significant driver of growth in other sectors as well. The world has grown to be dependent on connectivity and people spend a significant portion of their lives online (5 hours or more in the US) for entertainment, buying goods and services and connecting with others. In 2018 51% of the world population (3.9 bn people) are online and almost the whole world population lives within range of a mobile signal, often 3G or better.
Sustaining growth for big telecom companies has been difficult with mobile penetration reaching saturation in developed countries and new entrants that have been quicker in seizing emerging opportunities. The industry is forced to re-think its future and let go of the rules that guided them in the past. With developments in cloud, AI, blockchain and IoT quickly evolving, the opportunity landscape for telecom changes rapidly. In this digital era it is all about new business models and developing eco-systems that include incumbents as well as new players as they arrive on the scene.