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Part 1 – What industry 4.0 will mean for telcos

fourth industrial revolution

We are currently living at the very end of the third industrial era as Industry 4.0 is upon us and most would agree that the progress that has taken us to where we are now has been such an extensive journey. If we look into history, each new era brings in new forms of technology and way of life that of course would have not been possible without the hard work, discoveries, and innovations of our predecessors. In the technology sphere, specifically for telcos who have always been the epicenter of communications, the early 2000’s marked the beginning of a surging call for transformation on their business models unlike they’ve never experienced before.

The kaleidoscope view of the digital landscape

Suffice it to say the dawn of the third millennium introduced not only to telcos but also the world to a new digital landscape with the emergence of internet that subsequently changed market demands and brought in the genesis of Over-the-top (OTT) players; Facebook was started in 2004, YouTube in 2005 and WhatsApp in 2009 while Netflix may have established their business in 1997 but it’s only by 2007 they began gaining a larger traction after expanding their business towards OTT. In relation, the OTT entrants mentioned above are only a few among others who all have profoundly diversified the competitive boundaries of telcos beyond recognition from its earliest days.

Now, as we are gearing up to embark on the new digital revolution, industry 4.0 is expected to introduce the world into yet another major shift, the kind that will be bursting with a whole new level of unprecedented connectivity that will move at exponential rate, driven by disruptive technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT) and other advanced innovations. Dare we say that the disruptive technologies wrought by industry 4.0 will even lay the foundation for the next frontier as the satellite industry, for example, is already taking steps to bring space-based internet further.

The possibilities seem endless and all of these has been the talk of the town for quite some time in the tech world. It is a brazen line to say that telcos will not be immune towards this transformation. In fact, this new digital revolution will push telcos in new directions and open doors for opportunities that certainly will shake their business models once again.

So, let’s take a look at some of the opportunities that telcos can achieve in the fourth industrial revolution:

Leading next-generation applications

5G networks are the next generation of mobile internet connectivity

The technological metamorphosis onto the new digital revolution put telcos in a prime position to create an ecosystem wherein there is a demand for huge amount of data and hyper-connectivity. These requirements can be satisfied by next-generation technologies like 5G which provides a huge amount of bandwidth. In fact, the fourth industrial revolution hinges on 5G technology that promises services across a wide scale of disruptive technologies. According to Stratfor, the fifth generation of mobile communications networks will go beyond its previous generations of networks handling three different communications types: enhanced mobile broadband, massive machine-type communications, and ultra-reliable and low latency communications. Many telcos around the world have already jumped on the bandwagon in striving to become 5G pioneers.

Telcos and IoT: The Billion Dollar Opportunity

IoT refers to billions of physical devices connected to the internet, collecting and sharing data.

The demands for higher connectivity has created a big segment of the Internet of Things (IoT) which is expected to become a major source of revenues for operators. The IoT sector is almost an identical match for operators’ strengths and resources with their perennial ability to connect millions of devices to complex networks. With such massive connectivities, we can expect consumers’ behavior and expectations will certainly change as the requirement for data will continue to grow.

Uniquely positioned with unlimited access to network infrastructure, telcos can provide better performance, wider scale, and – tapping into vast pools of user data – much better usability than competition with IoT. Shaily Kumar from Digitalist Magazine explained that “having the access to tap the power of such predictive analytics, telcos could avoid network outages when there is any huge events that usually tagged with data surges. Comparably, IoT technology will enable telecom companies to monitor and plan maintenance more effectively, optimize bandwidth and coverage to boost download times, and improve customer service by reducing dropped calls and service wait times. This in turn will minimize revenue lost to service disruption.”

Gaming goldmine

The gaming industry is poised to be the next goldmine for telcos

As we enter the new digital revolution, telcos also have the added advantage to penetrate the games industry which is relying more and more on telecommunication networks and data. Connectivity and data have been the aim of many developers in the games industry since online gaming networks were first introduced for home consoles back in the 1990s. Now, current consoles all have online capabilities and even casual single player mobile games require a constant server connection to operate.

Add in the potential for the new Augmented Reality (AR) experiences, not forgetting the growth in mobile gaming, e-sports and the insatiable need for new content, all these gaming galore offer huge opportunities and a goldmine for new revenue potentials for telcos. According to Mediakix, the global gaming market will reach over $115 billion in 2018. The mobile gaming industry alone is expected to generate over $50 billion which accounts for nearly half of all global gaming revenue. Besides providing connectivity and data, telcos are also primed to take advantage of the multifaceted games industry by offering other value-added solutions to game developers such as direct operator billing, and HTML 5 games.

The not so final words

With everything evolving towards the new digital revolution, telcos must disrupt their own ways of doing business. The fourth industrial revolution propounds a new hyper-connected paradigm and embracing the disruptions as well as the transformations that come along with it will be strategically imperative. Stay tuned for Part 2 of what industry 4.0 will mean for Telcos to know more!

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Malaysia’s pursuit in harnessing globally competitive tech talents

PRIDE Market Day Hall by MDEC

Addressing the issues on the language barrier, mindset towards night shift work and strengthening government-private sector collaboration through PRIDE.

Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) has aggressively launched programs that aim to encourage young Malaysians to pursue a career in technology.  In a recent initiative, MDEC’s Talent and Digital Entrepreneurship Division (TDE) invited members of the academe, tech experts to business owners in a one-day session introducing Project PRIDE (Platform for Real Industry Driven Project Exchange).  PRIDE provides a structured engagement platform for industry players to collaborate with Premier Digital Tech Universities and Preferred Digital Tech Polytechnics in various capacities.

Read more about Project PRIDE, HERE

Forest Interactive attended the event and learned about how the Malaysian government has been pushing for programs targeted to produce talents that would soon become great assets in the tech industry.  Among the panelists were Rene Bernard, CEO of Lux Tag and President of ACCESS, Blockchain Association, Dr. Dayang Norhayati Abang Jawawi—an associate professor at the Faculty of Computing in UTM and Waran Govindarajah of IBM’s Shared Services and Telecom Expense Management.

The panelists at PRIDE
From left to right: Dr. Dayang Norhayati Abang Jawawi—an associate professor at the Faculty of Computing in UTM, Rene Bernard, CEO of Lux Tag and President of ACCESS, Blockchain Association, and Waran Govindarajah of IBM’s Shared Services and Telecom Expense Management

Mindset towards night shift

Waran of IBM shared that there are a lot of applicants in the company but the challenge includes mindset as some applicants won’t even accept night shift work. He continued to say that these individuals are missing out on the opportunity even pointing out that sometimes parents are involved in negotiating with the salary. Some of the audience found the quip funny.  Monster.com a leading job search portal cites Robert Hosking of Office Team that “some parents would involve in instances such as reviewing resumes and calling the employer to negotiate on the salary. It should not be the case.”

Waran further shared that because of this challenge, some companies are looking into hiring foreign talents more because they are the ones who are willing to accept jobs that would require time zone differences.  As for the academe, and in response to that, Dr. Dayang says ”some schools now have evening classes to help give students the idea of working at night, but that is still something that needs to be worked on.”

The language barrier

In an interesting take, one of the panelists Rene Bernard cited how language also became a barrier in Malaysian talents. In some cases, certain students are still unable to speak and articulate in English professionally.  Barnard shared that the readiness to be able to send emails has also become an issue. English is considered as a major factor on why some applicants do not get hired.

One of the audience also acknowledged how grammar would seem to be a struggle amongst the youth: “how do schools prepare students to go out of the interview?” Dr. Dayang of UTM recognized this challenge saying schools are preparing students to be ready for global work through numerous initiatives like getting students to practice and be accustomed to using English daily. There are also activities involving encouragement for students to do all school events in English and to “Think Global. “Mindset is the teacher’s responsibility hence will keep on trying to change the current situation,” says Dr. Dayang.

Some articles also point out how up-scaling language is the tested and proven approach. Countries like Japan to improve the marketability of their people and their businesses as a whole and that Malaysia has taken an approach for reform on tertiary education (“English in Malaysia: Current Use and Status,” Toshiko Yamaguchi, David Deterding, 2016).

Bernard, however, chimed in on the ”Think Global” mindset saying: “brain drain happens when we give individuals the mindset that one must leave its own country, that could be one issue.” Dr. Dayang replied with a personal perspective: “the ones here have limited flexibility as opposed to those who actually went to study abroad.  Two (2) years in University and two (2) years in the industry program helps expose the student to the industry.”

Statistics show that brain drain is rampant in South East Asia, in fact, the number of highly educated migrants continuously increase over the years due to higher wages, better working conditions, and benefits that come with the job offer overseas.

Share of highly educated migrants in OECD countries
Reference: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-06-05/brain-drain-from-southeast-asia-poses-obstacle-to-growth

Keeping the interest alive

All three panelists agreed that it is important to hire interns to experience real work scenario in the industry.  Lux Tag’s CEO said, “SMEs have a different approach on what can be done to help students get jobs in the company.” Adding that this is mainly because some do not always have the luxury of time and workforce to train students. IBM however, is a more established and larger scope and will have more options. Waran noted that every employer should: “treat the interns correctly, not allow them to do only photocopies or just give tasks like making coffee. To prepare them, one must treat them well. The apprentice should see how the work is done.”

There are also complexities with internship because interns have to learn how everything works in the real world. Mentors in IBM would allow interns to shadow executives for exposure on the job.  The scope of shadowing is dependent on how much work the intern will take on. Sensitive data and tasks that require accountability remain a caveat. But at the end of the day, the ultimate goal is to mold someone to become a globally ready professional.

About MDEC:

Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation or MDEC (formerly known as Multimedia Development Corporation Sdn. Bhd.) is the lead agency in driving the digital economy in Malaysia under the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia Malaysia. Since its inception 21 years ago, MDEC’s mission is to develop the nation’s digital economy. MDEC’s implementation efforts are centered on driving investments, building local tech champions, catalysing digital innovation ecosystems and propagating digital inclusivity.

About Forest Interactive:

Established in 2006, our headquarters is located in the center of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with global operations across 11 cities. Throughout its inception, the company has entrenched itself to play an important part within the vibrant mobile industry, working closely with Mobile Network Operators, Industry Regulators, Government Agencies, Consumer Groups and related associations in ensuring as well as enabling innovative solutions for the mobile ecosystem. We have established a competitive portfolio of end-to-end solutions for our telco, enterprise and content partners that reach out to more than 2.9B subscribers worldwide and has already partnered with over 100 corporate clients and 93 mobile operators across 36 countries.

For further inquiries, get in touch with us, we’d love to hear from you!

Email : corporatePR@forest-interactive.com
Website : http://www.forest-interactive.com

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Events

Forest Interactive Announced as a Silver and Bronze Winner in Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards

Asia Pacific Stevie Awards 2018 (New)

KUALA LUMPUR, MYS – 24th April 2018 – Forest Interactive is announced as the winner of a Silver Stevie Award for Innovation in Consumer Products & Services for its digital payment platform, Wallet Codes under the New Product category in the fifth annual Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards. Able to meet the scores of more than 100 executives around the world acting as judges, the company bagged another win and also named the winner of a Bronze Stevie Award for Excellence in Innovation in Technology Industries.

The Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards is the only business awards program to recognize innovation in the workplace in all 22 nations of the Asia-Pacific region.  The Stevie Awards are widely considered to be the world’s premier business awards, conferring recognition for achievement in programs such as The International Business Awards® for sixteen years. Nicknamed the Stevies for the Greek word for “crowned,” the awards will be presented to winners at a gala banquet at the Mira Hotel in Hong Kong on Friday, 1 June.

The Vice President of Forest Interactive, Sharon Maurenn stated that “We are truly honored to win not only one but two awards from different categories. We can’t be more grateful for the great recognition among other prestigious companies. On behalf of Forest Interactive, I would say, these two winnings are the homage as a global mobile tech company for all of our team’s continuous commitment for their hard work and never-ending belief in fulfilling the company’s vision to enrich mobile experience through multifaceted innovative products tailored to enhance telecommunication solutions. “

More than 800 nominations from organizations across the Asia-Pacific region were considered this year. “We are very pleased that entries to this program grew by more than 30% this year,” said Michael Gallagher, president and founder of the Stevie Awards.  “This growth illustrates how vital innovation is to business growth, and how important being recognized for their innovation is to enterprises throughout the Asia-Pacific region.  We extend our warmest congratulations to all of this year’s Gold, Silver, and Bronze Stevie Award winners.”

Details about the Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards and the list of Stevie Award winners are available at http://Asia.Stevieawards.com

PR Newswire Asia is the official news distribution partner of the 2018 Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards

About Forest Interactive: Forest Interactive is a global mobile technology company that provides multifaceted Platform as a Service and Value Added Service solutions specializing in Mobile Content Distribution and Digital Payment Services. Established in 2006, the company established a competitive portfolio of end-to-end solutions for our telco, enterprise and content partners that reach out to approximately more than 700 million subscribers worldwide and has already partnered with over 100 corporate clients and 40 mobile operators across 12 cities in Asia, the Middle-East and the US.

About the Stevie® Awards: Stevie Awards are conferred in seven programs: the Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards, the German Stevie Awards, the American Business Awards, the International Business Awards®, the Stevie Awards for Women in Business, the Stevie Awards for Great Employers, and the Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service. Stevie Awards competitions receive more than 10,000 entries each year from organizations in more than 60 nations. Honoring organizations of all types and sizes and the people behind them, the Stevies recognize outstanding performances in the workplace worldwide.

For further inquiries, get in touch with us, we’d love to hear from you!

Email: corporatePR@forest-interactive.com

Website: forest-interactive.com

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Associations

Forest Interactive’s Wallet Codes product selected as finalist for Asia Communication Awards 2018

Asia Communication Awards 2018

Forest Interactive, a global mobile technology company that provides multifaceted Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Value Added Service (VAS) solutions specializing in Mobile Content Distribution and Digital Payment Services, is shortlisted for the Asia Communication Awards. The awards is a platform that recognises achievement and innovation in Asia to the global telecommunications industry. The winners of the awards will be presented on June 27th 2018, in Singapore, at the Conrad Centennial.

“We are honoured to be shortlisted among the respectable and huge competitors in the telco industry under the Innovation Award: Vendor category for one of our technology, Wallet Codes” states Sheena Pimentel, Head of Corporate PR. “What makes the technology so special, is it allows a new revenue stream for mobile operators to reach millions of gamers globally, and at the same time we are addressing the lack of banking privileges in certain countries.  Imagine having to want to buy a game in your wish list because of the Steam Winter Sale, but you don’t have the means.  Wallet Codes gives every person a chance to buy their favorite item for their favorite hero without the need to go to stores to buy the actual cards, at any time of the day,” Sheena adds. Designed and conceptualized for the games market specifically for gamers, Wallet Codes offers optimization of mobile billing as the alternative payment channel for mobile subscribers—Forest Interactive understands how credit card penetration is low in certain regions and the company intends to bridge that gap by offering competitive prices in comparison to traditional distributors all from the comforts of a mobile phone.

Currently operating in 5 countries—Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia and Pakistan—the company aims to strengthen its market reach in Thailand, Myanmar, and to the company’s other subsidiaries around the globe. Apart from that, Forest Interactive are also expanding westwards towards the Middle East and North Africa regions—specifically in Algeria and the UAE. These upcoming expansions will mark its footprint in the field as one of the major players that combines fintech and telecoms solution for the gaming industry worldwide. The industry is expected to generate revenue of more than $12 billion in 2022 and Forest Interactive aims to help pave the road for mobile operators as well as billing aggregators to meet market demands with Wallet Codes.

You may download the complete list of finalists here.

For further inquiries, get in touch with us, we’d love to hear from you!

Email : corporatePR@forest-interactive.com
Website : www.forest-interactive.com

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Associations

Forest Interactive is now a member of the National ICT Association of Malaysia (PIKOM)

PIKOM Forest Interactive

Forest Interactive, a leading mobile solutions company is proud to announce its affiliation with the National ICT Association of Malaysia (PIKOM) as a member.  Being a Malaysian multi-national mobile technology company with global presence and operations that provide Value Added Service (VAS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) solutions, the membership is aimed for Forest Interactive to be a part of PIKOM’s objective in promoting the industry’s growth and be ‘the voice of the ICT industry’. Furthermore, with the National ICT Association of Malaysia’s membership, Forest Interactive plans to leverage the missions that PIKOM associates with MDeC, and MaTRADE, WITSA as well as ASOCIO to tap new markets and leverage on its regional and global networks.

As Forest Interactive, we are honored to be a member of the National ICT Association of Malaysia (PIKOM) to further strengthen our vision towards leading mobile distribution network for digital contents and services within the emerging markets globally.

 

About Forest Interactive:

Established in 2006, our headquarters is located in the center of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with global operations across 11 cities. Throughout its inception, the company has entrenched itself to play an important part within the vibrant mobile industry, working closely with Mobile Network Operators, Industry Regulators, Government Agencies, Consumer Groups and related associations in ensuring as well as enabling innovative solutions for the mobile ecosystem. We have established a competitive portfolio of end-to-end solutions for our telco, enterprise and content partners that reach out to more than 2.9B subscribers worldwide and has already partnered with over 100 corporate clients and 93 mobile operators across 36 countries.

About PIKOM:

PIKOM, THE NATIONAL ICT ASSOCIATION OF MALAYSIA is a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) representing the information and communications technology (ICT) industry in Malaysia. Established on 20th August 1986, the association aims to improve the business climate in the interests of all its member companies and to promote the industry growth in line with national aspirations. PIKOM creates opportunities for its members to enjoy the benefits offered by advances in ICT. Its membership currently stands at 1000+ comprising companies involved in a whole spectrum of ICT products and services which commands 80% of the total ICT trade in Malaysia. Learn more: http://www.pikom.org.my/

 

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Email : corporatePR@forest-interactive.com
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Associations

Forest Interactive joins as Associate Member of the GSMA

Forest Interactive member of GSMA

Forest Interactive is proud to announce its affiliation with the GSM Association (GSMA) as an Associate Member. As a Value Added Service (VAS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) solutions provider, Forest Interactive aims to acquire the benefits of the global partner network from the GSMA membership to streamline exchanges between design and simulation within the mobile networks industry. Moreover, with the GSMA membership, Forest Interactive intends to attain its vision towards leading mobile distribution network for digital contents and services for emerging markets globally.

As Forest Interactive, we are honored to be an Associate Member of the GSMA to provide top-notch mobile service for mobile operators in compliance with the GSMA standards which seeks to ensure best practices to cater to the inexorable demand of the global telecommunication economy.

About GSMA:

The GSM Association (GSMA) is an established body that supports and promotes the interests of mobile operators worldwide, unifying nearly 800 operators with more than 300 companies in the vast mobile ecosystem including handset and device makers, software companies, equipment providers and internet companies, as well as organizations in adjoining industry sectors. The GSMA also bring forth industry-leading events such as Mobile World Congress Barcelona, Mobile World Congress Shanghai, Mobile World Congress Americas and the Mobile 360 Series conferences.

About Forest Interactive:

Forest Interactive provides forefront solutions and services along with outstanding merit of development methodologies to enable substantial results for MNOs, MVNOs and Game Developers. The headquarters is stationed in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with global operations in 9 countries, the company offers multifaceted PAAS and VAS solutions that are specifically engineered to cater customer expectations, which allows any mobile operator to quickly optimize and achieve the best solutions.

For further inquiries, get in touch with us, we’d love to hear from you!

Email : corporatePR@forest-interactive.com

Website : http://www.forest-interactive.com

Follow us on our social medias : Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Youtube

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