Deutsche Telekom (DT) has the clear ambition to be a leading European telco, with digitalization a key part of its strategy. In 2016, DT increased its revenue by 5.6 percent year-on-year to reach €73.1 billion based on high investment in its networks. DT CTO Bruno Jacobfeuerborn explained how the German operator is ramping up its network strategy during digital transformation.
WinWin: As content and video are redefining the telecom industry, how can DT shift its video strategy from reactive to proactive?
Bruno Jacobfeuerborn: We are following a video content aggregator approach. We offer our customers whatever they want in one package on linear TV or other content platforms. We do it in Germany, and Europe as well. It’s one of our key propositions. We decided to use Huawei's video platform to fulfill consumer demand to experience SD, HD, and 4K UHD video on any screen, anytime, anywhere.
Deutsche Telekom will offer unlimited mobile streaming services without reducing the high-speed data volume included in their tariffs. Customers can stream movies, TV shows, sports or music without worrying that data throttling will kick in. They don’t have to look for the next Wi-Fi hotspot to prevent their data allowance from being used up.
We’ve also launched a mobile TV streaming service offering around 40 channels for smartphones and tablets, which includes all major German public and commercial channels. Each user can register up to four devices for Entertain TV Mobil, including desktops and laptops accessing the service through a web browser interface. To optimize our service quality from end to end, we use machine learning and cloud services. End users can have a single point of content entry with one account and a single payment.
WinWin: How will DT use its rich fixed network resources to deliver a seamless user experience, especially on copper networks?
Jacobfeuerborn: The foundation is our Integrated Network Strategy, which is an intelligent combination of modern fixed and mobile IP networks. So, as video services are really increasing demand for bandwidth, we decided to adopt vectoring and super vectoring to bring us 100 Mbps and 250 Mbps and G.fast to give speeds of 500 to 700 Mbps. If we roll out fiber to the building (FTTB), we will install fibers in the G.fast box in cellars, which we’ll then serve with coaxial cables or normal telephone lines. Customers will get more than 200 Mbps. Bonding technology combines fixed line and mobile capabilities to get even higher speed services. With such high speeds, I think we can fulfill 99.9 percent of requests from most customers.
WinWin: What is Deutsche Telekom’s plan for utilizing FTTH technology to better engage with consumers and boost ROI?
Jacobfeuerborn: Our strategy is to bring fiber close to the home. We started with vectoring. Then we’ll deploy super vectoring and G.fast, and later FTTH. We are rapidly bringing Germany into the high-speed age. DT has set itself the goal of providing up to 80 percent of households in Germany with a minimum 50 Mbps by 2018. Today, we already have hybrid routers that leverage the best of our fixed and mobile networks.. Our next-generation, low-latency, integrated 5G network is a high-bandwidth answer to opening up the digital future in Europe. We have a clear timetable on the way to a gigabit society.
WinWin: How will DT leverage the synergy between fixed and mobile networks to raise its market share?
Jacobfeuerborn: We offer both fixed and mobile services in most of our markets and have adopted an FMC strategy. We’re extending our quad-play strategy to many European markets through Magenta One, which was first launched as MagentaEINS in Germany in September 2014. It combines mobile services with fixed voice, broadband, and TV offerings, with small, medium, and large options available. Our 22 million fixed network connections and 40 million mobile customers have demonstrated the market potential for Deutsche Telekom as an integrated telecommunications provider.
WinWin: How do you see the role of cloud in making your business more efficient?
Jacobfeuerborn: Deutsche Telekom is pursuing a strategy to become what we describe as "the leading telco in Europe". We plan to invest more than €6 billion in the expansion of our European networks by 2018, complete the migration of customer lines to all-IP and offer more cloud-based products across borders. We’re working with Huawei on the way to do that, as we have different platforms in each country. We plan to bring everything into one cloud based on a pan-European approach.