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Nearly all Europes operators to offer 5G services to sport events’ organisers

Nearly all Europes operators to offer 5G services to sport events’ organisers

The study is based on a survey of C-level and other senior decision makers from 60 of the world’s 100 largest operators, including operators in Europe.

It was undertaken by Ovum for Amdocs, and found that 94% of network operators in Europe intend to deliver 5G enterprise services to major live sports and e-sports event organisers. The idea is to improve fans’ experience and “drive efficiencies” inside the stadia and other sports venues.

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Apparently operators view sports events such as the soccer 2020 Euros and Tokyo Summer Olympics 2020 as a chance to create new enterprise services supported by 5G.

For example, 88% of European operators that took part in the study said they plan to offer IoT-related technology and services to tournament organisers to make stadium management more efficient.

Over half (59%) want to offer services for fans such as enabling them being able to order food and drinks from their mobile devices.

Driving growth

Nearly half (48%) of respondents thought that 5G will boost their enterprise business and 47% believe it will drive growth in average revenue per user (ARPU).

They are optimistic about the impact of 5G on sports-related businesses, particularly those involving media: more than half (53%) believe 5G will drive mainstream adoption of virtual reality services and 47% believe 5G will drive growth in sports TV subscriptions.

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Partnerships the way into sports

To leverage their 5G investments, Ovum reckons European operators will rely on partnerships in the sporting arena. Three quarters (76%) plan to create new partnerships with broadcasters and over-the-top service providers in their quest to transform the delivery of sports coverage.

Virtual reality will also play a part in this new experience, with 59% looking to partner with virtual reality app providers.

In addition:

* 65% of European operators seek partnerships with tournament organisers
* 59% of European operators plan to create partnerships with device manufacturers
* 53% of European operators want partnerships with social media companies
* 47% of European operators intend to create partnerships with augmented reality app providers

Gary Miles, Chief Marketing Officer, Amdocs, said, “Out of a multitude of potential 5G use cases, our research shows that sports and esports is certainly among the most compelling.”

Concerns and challenges

When European operators were asked about 5G network-related challenges services for sports and e-sports, the main concern cited by three quarters (76%) of them was delivering enough capacity and connectivity to support live HD video.

Indoor coverage at stadia is also seen as a major issue by more than a third (36%). In terms of IT-related challenges, end-to-end management of sports-related services was regarded as a key challenge by 64% of European operators. This was followed by scalability of business and operational support systems (BSS/OSS) cited by 42% of the operators.

To help address these challenges, 59% of European operators see virtualised/cloud radio access network (RAN) as the most important aspect of network design as this architecture can provide more flexible, cost-effective, and highly distributed radio network coverage, while concentrating much of the RAN’s functionality away from the main venue.

On the IT front, 76% of European operators see big data platforms, which can help assure quality of service and provide capabilities to continuously personalise services to customers, as the most critical.

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