We attended the WAS (GSMA Wholesale Agreements & Solutions Group) conference in Valencia from 28th – 31st October and felt the buzz, the buzz of something great happening, the buzz of anticipation and the buzz of the roaming evolution, or indeed the roaming revolution!
The roaming industry is unarguably going through its biggest change since the first roaming agreement was signed in 1992. If at that time, 27 years ago, we had talked about THINGS using these agreements to communicate, it would have been synonymous with a low budget horror movie! Now, in 2019, THINGS really are communicating and roaming plays an integral part in this.
The Internet of Things has created communication channels where there are no boundaries, building a new ecosystem of Operators, MVNEs, MVNOs, OEMs and Suppliers in our industry. Technology is developing at an incredible speed (literally!) with 5G, NB-IoT and EUICC now a reality and it’s exciting, really exciting.
Of the 1,400 delegates, there was a mix of great minds who have dedicated themselves to this industry since that first roaming agreement, and new innovators dedicated to making a difference. An eclectic mix but it works, and it works so well.
Tritex voted top GSMA start-up
It was a fantastic start to the week with start-up companies presenting their products and ideas in the first plenary session, voting then opened for all WAS attendees to choose their favourite. Huge congratulations to Tritex Solutions for coming in first place, thoroughly deserved with a product that roaming teams have only ever dreamt of! Allowing start-ups to show-case their products is a new WAS initiative, which everyone agreed was a great addition.
Top Plenary Sessions
The plenary sessions continued through the week with topics including 5G, VoLTE, RCS, Billing Charging Evolution, MIoT and The Future of Roaming, chaired by Kathleen Leach (Sprint) with speakers such as Nina Le Richardson (TNS) and Heather Stacey (T-Mobile) contributing to what was a high energy and relevant agenda.
Introducing The Nextgen Labs
As well as having the opportunity to meet with our valued customers, it was also the week where Nextgen Clearing launched the ‘Nextgen Labs’. These Labs are designed to showcase Nextgen product innovation as well as collaborate, listen and learn from our industry colleagues and customers. The three Labs focused on Billing Charging Evolution, Data Visualisation and M2M Monetisation. These sessions were incredibly successful with great feedback. Innovation is at the heart of what we do at Nextgen and we are not only on this journey of evolution, we consider ourselves one of the leaders.
It really WAS a great week, and huge thanks to our kind hosts Telefónica and the GSMA for organising such a successful event in such a beautiful city. Look out for a Nextgen Lab coming soon to a location near you!