UK wireless technology company Ranplan has claimed that its innovative technology will play a 'major role' in the ongoing global evolution of smart cities. The radio planning specialist is building a stellar reputation on a global basis - primarily because it has developed tools that plan both indoor and combined indoor and outdoor RF wireless networks. Telecom Review managed to secure an exclusive interview with Ranplan's charismatic CEO Alastair Williamson at CommunicAsia, Asia's premier ICT exhibition and conference held annually in Singapore to discuss the organization's future in the APAC region, its role within smart cities - and its objectives for the rest of 2017.

Read more: Ranplan CEO claims his company will play a ‘major role’ in the global evolution of smart cities

The main challenge telcos face today - the same as any enterprise - is changing their culture to adapt to the digital future, says Nizar Hneini, Managing Partner of Detecon, the consulting arm of German-based Deutsche Telekom Group, speaking to Telecom Review. Digitization is about simplicity, innovation, trust and transparency - traits that most enterprises try to promote, but it's much easier said than done, says Nizar.

Read more: Detecon implores telcos to rethink their culture in order to stay ahead

Dubai-based neXgen consulting group recently rebranded as NXN to highlight its transition into a smart city and digital transformation service provider. The company provides consulting services, but now also strives to be an organization's "Trusted Digital Service Provider" by significantly reducing time-to-market and time-to-service, utilizing its smart city as a service platform, CEO Ghazi Atallah explains to Telecom Review.

Read more: NXN CEO: Partnerships essential to meet digital transformation objectives

The best regulatory solution is one that adapts legislation and innovations to new services and moves gradually towards a regulatory framework that is evolutionary in its approach whilst at the same time ensuring consistency across the national regulatory policy, says H.E. Mohammed Ali Al-Mannai, president of the Communications Regulatory Authority (CRA) - State of Qatar, speaking to Telecom Review about the ever-changing and expanding role of regulators.

Read more: CRA president: The role of regulators is always changing and expanding

For communications service providers (CSPs) that are evolving their networks to the telco cloud and transforming their business to become digital service providers (DSPs) MYCOM OSI provides assurance and analytics solutions, and has recently been selected to assure the world's first telco cloud, said Mounir Ladki, president and CTO of MYCOM OSI, speaking to Telecom Review. Mr. Ladki explained how MYCOM OSI is the ideal partner to help transform CSPs into DSPs.

Read more: MYCOM OSI: Providing an innovative platform for digital service transformation

"Enabling 5G requires virtualization, cloudification and orchestration - all things that direct du towards 5G infrastructure," said Saleem Al Balooshi, executive vice president of Infrastructure and Technology at UAE-based telecommunications service provider 'du', speaking to Telecom Review about the operator's plans to develop 5G infrastructure to be implemented in time for Dubai Expo 2020.

Read more: Virtualization, cloudification and orchestration key pillars of du’s 5G strategy

Nokia's vision is to "disrupt the current ecosystem with extreme automation," said Mohamed Samir, head of services for MEA at Nokia, speaking to Telecom Review about the company's customized services and solutions that cater to the needs and aspirations of communications service providers. Nokia's MIKA, for example, is the first digital assistant customized for the telco industry.

Read more: Nokia's vision: Disrupting the current ecosystem with extreme automation

Industry expectations are that the first set of 3GPP 5G standards will be finalized in time for first full-blown commercial 5G networks by 2020, says Aji Ed, head of Technology, MEA, Nokia, speaking to Telecom Review. Nokia offers the industry's first end-to-end 5G solution based on pre-standards and this is called 5G FIRST. Aji highlights the use cases for Nokia's 5G FIRST and how it can bring them closer to 5G commercialization.

Read more: Nokia’s first end-to-end 5G solution based on pre-standards: 5G FIRST

The global ICT industry is booming and this digital revolution requires more energy than ever before, resulting in higher operational costs. The solution, according to Huawei executives speaking to Telecom Review at the company's ICT Energy Efficiency Summit in Dubai, is a product line dedicated to simultaneously reducing the energy consumption and OPEX of telecom base stations and data centers.

Read more: Huawei’s energy efficiency solutions aid carriers in reducing OPEX

As the world becomes ever more digitally connected, industries are experiencing an ICT-driven transformation. Because of this, traditional revenue streams are slowing for operators, says Ericsson's Wojciech Bajda, Head of Industry and Society Unit in Region Middle East, speaking to Telecom Review about Ericsson's latest '5G Business Potential' report.

Read more: Ericsson says traditional revenue streams are slowing for operators and 5G will enable new...

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