RCS momentum builds as two thirds of operators
look to deploy services by the end of 2015
BICS industry survey reveals majority of mobile executives are preparing for
RCS launch, but RoI and interoperability remain key challenges
Brussels – Belgium, June 3, 2014 – BICS, a global provider of wholesale carrier services,
today announced the results of a survey of senior executives at mobile operators, revealing the
key challenges in delivering Rich Communications Services (RCS) to provide a fast response to
the ever-growing number of end-users using OTT applications for messaging services.
The survey of senior executives, held at IMS World Forum in Barcelona, found 68 per cent had
either already launched, or plan to launch, RCS initiatives by the end of 2015 and also revealed
the associated challenges to the rollout of the technology.
Of the mobile executives surveyed, 43% said the biggest challenge with the launch of RCS
services is the concern about monetisation of the service and assured return on investment.
This reflects the typical challenge of some mobile operators to justify the usual Capex
requirement for IMS network rollout. The second most important challenge, raised by 20% of
respondents, was in creating a truly interoperable service – incorporating video calling,
multimedia file transfer and group chat services.
Over half of respondents (59%) see the main value of RCS in consumer services with B2C
value added services and multi-device access for end users, while a further 30% see its main
potential in providing messaging services to a range of other devices. From a mobile operator’s
perspective, almost one third (32%) believed the main benefit was in providing operators with
opportunity for innovation, while 28% said it is part of their strategy to move to all-IP networks.
This shows that RCS is now perceived as a long term technology strategy for mobile operators
to create value and new mobile services.
RCS is a GSMA initiative designed to offer rich and simpler communications services which are
interoperable with operators internationally, providing the same level of ubiquity as voice and
SMS. RCS is already available in 23 countries and the number of operators adopting the
service is expected to increase to 76 by the end of 2014
Divya Ghai Wakankar, senior product manager – voice, BICS, said: “The results of the BICS
RCS survey show there is a strong ambition from mobile operators to leverage the full potential
of RCS to bring next generation services to market. The success of OTT applications proves
there is a huge demand from consumers towards more engaging methods of communication.
By deploying RCS, mobile operators can get creative with their offerings, while utilising their
unique position as trusted operators to drive adoption with extended reach across geographical
boundaries. By adopting hubbing and hosted models, operators can overcome major
challenges and bring RCS services to market quickly and cost-efficiently, ensuring full
interoperability and increasing their ability to challenge OTT players’ dominant position in this
enhanced communications market.”
Note to editors
Over 100 senior executives were surveyed, and were polled as part of a live interactive survey
at the ‘Future of Communications – RCS, WebRTC and VoLTE’ session at IMS World Forum in
Barcelona in April 2014.
BICS delivers best-in-class international wholesale solutions to any communication service
provider worldwide. Through its Mosaic portfolio, a comprehensive, flexible and innovative suite
of solutions designed to be used individually, or collectively, BICS meets the existing and future
requirements of the global telecoms industry.
BICS’ headquarter is located in Brussels with regional offices in Bern, Dubai, Madrid, New York
and Singapore. We also have a satellite office in Beijing and local representation in Accra, Cape
Town, Miami, Montevideo, Nairobi and Toronto. Our team continuously strives to provide our
customers with the highest levels of quality, reliability and interoperability enabling them to
maximise their end-user value.
With our successful consolidation strategy, and a continuing focus on technological
advancement and innovation, we have achieved a world-leading position in the international
Voice and Mobile Data markets.
For more information, please visit: www.bics.com or contact Katrien Busschaert at BICS:
GSMA Network 2020 Rich Communications data