A report by Wireless Federation highlights that 2013 will be the year when a majority of Mobile Operators will start treating Big Data as a strategic priority, for both internal as well as external use.
Internal use will be to boost ARPU,reduce CHURN, curb Fraud among other key use cases. External use will be to generate revenue from Big Data by selling insights to various verticals like Verizon sell insights like Verizon (Precision Market Insights) and Telefonica (Smart Steps).
AT&T labs has also been studying various uses of anonymous mobile usage data or Call Data Records (CDRs) since 2009. One of them being the ability for city planners to get a better idea of where people work, live etc aiding better planning in the city to help curb traffic jams, plan major events, better public transport systems, provide better security etc.
As far back as 2011, researchers from AT&T labs gathered CDRs from over a million customers, and these CDRs ran into Billions.Users were from LA, SF and NY city primarily. Privacy was of utmost importance and as such antenna locations were used rather than specific phone locations, and the data was made completely anonymous. Findings revealed that residents of Los Angeles travel longer distances than San Francisco, and SF residents travel more than those of Manhattan, BUT the longest trips of Manhattan residents are longer than those of LA residents.
In another study it was revealed that more residents of the North & West parts of Morristown, N.J. attended the St.Patricks day parade in March 2011, compared to the South & East parts. This could potentially help make better traffic arrangements potentially in the future.
This information was earlier available through expensive surveys and infrequent census data. With high mobile penetration rates, it is possible to collect intelligence from Big Data easily now.
The potential of Big Data for Mobile operators holds a key to the falling ARPUs and lower return on Mobile Internet related investments. Operators who donít leverage this soon, stand to lose out on this large pportunity. Market leaders and first movers will stand to gain more significantly than others.
Source: Wireless Federation.