Following its consecutive success throughout the years, Telecom Review's annual summit will be held in Lebanon, bringing together the best telecom and ICT industry leaders under one roof on the 20th of April, 2017, to participate in its 8th edition summit: It's All About SMART Networking.

This year's summit will bring interesting panels from Lebanon and abroad, highlighting the telecom industry's continuous evolution in the country. Speakers and panelists will talk about the trendiest topics such as: Internet of Thing; its best implementation and its influence on our daily lives, 5G the next big things waited!  The region, Apps development and VAS services. Cyber security and privacy will also be tackled, talking about the role of regulators, government operators in dealing with security, threats, solutions and much more.

Save the date and be part of the most anticipated event of the year!

As the introduction of ubiquitous 5G technology approaches, understanding its use cases and defining the deployment strategies are going to be the key to integrating it on a large-scale, accessible basis. As technology with the potential to revolutionize almost every aspect of modern life for governments, industries, enterprises, and individuals, operators must evaluate the benefits of 5G and set implementation strategies to ensure that they stay ahead of the perpetually transforming ICT industry curve.

For operators, the concept of 5G is not difficult to grasp, but understanding and communicating its many use cases is pertinent in bridging the gap between operator and customer. This begins with understanding how next-generation technology will alter everyday operations. According to the Middle East and North East Africa appendix of Ericsson’s 2016 Mobility Report, between 2016 and 2022, smartphone subscriptions will more than double from 230 million to 480 million. And while 33 percent of subscribers currently have smartphones, this figure will increase to 56 percent in the next five years. Because smartphone traffic is a key driver for data traffic, 5G will be integral in the adoption of mobile broadband.

Additionally, it is predicted that average active smartphone data consumption per month will increase from 1.8 Gigabytes (GB) at the end of 2016 to 13 GB by 2022. What’s more, mobile data traffic in the region is expected to reach around 4.8 Exabytes (EB) per month by the end of 2022, which is almost 13 times greater than it is estimated to be at the end of 2016. Taken together, these factors indicate immense growth potential for big data in the coming years, and 5G will provide the necessary means to function efficiently and effectively at such advanced data transmission levels.

Beyond keeping pace with the rapid increase of smartphone use, 5G will also enable new opportunities for the Internet of Things (IoT), as vendors push the limits of technology. As more and more devices, sensors, and appliances connect to each other and to the internet, security and sustainability are key requirements for the successful uptake of 5G services. By 2022, it is reported that the Middle East and North East Africa will have around 20 million 5G subscribers and cellular IoT connections will reach 45 million from 10 million in 2016.

5G use cases span nearly every industry. In the TV and media industry, the technology will allow for broadband and media presence everywhere, making it possible to communicate in crowded or remote areas at high speed. In the transportation industry, sensors embedded in roads, railways, airfields, and vehicles will communicate with each other through the 5G network. In the infrastructure industry, 5G will bring the high reliability and low latency required to control critical services and infrastructure. In the manufacturing industry, 5G will allow for remote control of heavy machinery, in turn increasing efficiency and reducing costs and risks. But the use cases don’t stop there; 5G will also transform healthcare, agriculture, utilities, and many other commercial sectors-and telecommunications operators will be at the center of the transformation.

IoT has the power to facilitate the digital transformation of nearly every industry, unleashing creative business models that will help network operators in the region to prosper into the future. Moreover, greater technology investments are foreseen in the region, with manufacturing and transportation sectors expected to be the largest contributors. The growth of 5G is linked to the expansion of the complete digital ecosystem and the realization of the Internet of Things. Network development and rollout must occur in tandem with the development of terminals and devices.

In a world where the technologies of the future are approaching at an unprecedented pace, operators must start assessing the cost associated with the deployment of 5G versus its revenue-generating potential. Operators need to take a holistic approach to investment with the view to adapting next-generation technology in its earliest stages in order to optimize the technology’s uses moving forward. With nearly one third (31%) of the global operator community expecting to launch full commercial 5G service by the end of 2021, and almost a further half (44%) anticipating this outcome by the end of 2025, operators must recognize the urgent requirement for collaboration between fixed and mobile networks, and the need to share resources more effectively and pro-actively. Success in the investment in 5G use cases is what will ultimately fuel the overall realization and success of the Networked Society.

Scott Gegenheimer
Zain Group CEO & GSMA Board Member

Telecom Review continued its dedication & commitment to the ICT industry and exceeded all expectations with holding the best and largest high level executives of ICT gathering. These awards recognize industry leaders for their efficiency and hard work in 2016, and are a special way for Telecom Review to help celebrate the winner’s success.

This year there were 167 nominations for the Telecom Review Excellence Awards. We want to thank all of the judges who worked tirelessly on reviewing and judging the nominees.

Winners were chosen based on recognized and demonstrated capabilities in their specific sector by an independent panel of 15 experienced industry veterans.

“This year’s award winners represent the absolute best in our industry and we are very proud to honor these winners with such a distinguished award,” said Toni Eid, CEO of Trace Media International.

Etisalat, winners of the ‘Best Middle Eastern Operator’ currently has operations in 17 countries across the Middle East, Africa and Asia, providing 162m customers with high quality services and is the largest operator in the Middle East, by market cap. 4G services are already available in 11 of the countries where it operates, enabling 790 million people potential access to its latest network services, while in 2016 Etisalat was the first in the region to run live trials of the next gen 5G network. Investment in an advanced network infrastructure has enabled the UAE to remain a global leader in fiber optic connectivity.

Commenting on the gathering of Industry Leaders, Jeff Seal, Managing Partner of Telecom Review North America noted: “Once again Telecom Review has brought together the leaders of the ICT/telecom industry.”

About Telecom REVIEW

Telecom Review is a leading publisher of English, Arabic and French magazines that cover a broad spectrum of issues that interest the modern and educated reader. Building on the expertise and skills of its management team, reporters, contributors and media professionals, Telecom Review strives to provide its readers with quality reporting through research, analysis and insightful articles rich in content and style.

ITU Telecom World 2016 launched proceedings, welcoming influential participants from public and private sectors and across the ICT industry, including SMEs, from around the world.

Proceedings began with the Opening Ceremony, in the presence of H.R.H Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, Kingdom of Thailand, Chan-o-cha Prayut, Prime Minister, Kingdom of Thailand and Houlin Zhao, Secretary-General, International Telecommunication Union.

Addressing an audience of event participants and special guests which included Heads of State and Ministers, Heads of UN Agencies, Regulators and industry leaders (in order of speaking), Chan-o-cha Prayut, Prime Minister, Kingdom of Thailand outlined key components of the event, including highlights of the Thailand Pavilion and the Event's core focus on collaboration, the digital economy and SMEs, noting the "Thai government and ITU have placed emphasis on the cooperation of entrepreneurs, SMEs and start-up groups."

Acknowledging his appreciation for H.R.H Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn's most valuable and committed support for ICTs, in particular for social development, ITU Secretary-General, Houlin Zhao noted Thailand's remarkable progress in ICT developments. Mr. Zhao extended his sincere condolences to the Royal family and the Thai people and voiced his hope that the event, with its focus on development through the digital economy, will in some small way be able to contribute to His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej's work and legacy.

H.R.H Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn officially opened the Event, noting how it offers "investment opportunities for SMEs and start-ups which help accelerate economic growth in many countries."

Forum Opening
Collaborating in the digital economy with a specific focus on the key role of SMEs in the digital ecosystem was the theme that kicked of the ITU Telecom World Forum Debate. The opening session provided unique and powerful perspectives from heads of state, government and international organizations worldwide.

Taking to the floor first, Houlin Zhao, Secretary-General, International Telecommunication Union, spoke of the importance of ICTs as enablers, noting that "Within the ICT industry, it is the innovative small and medium enterprises - tech SMEs - that are key to industry disruption, to job creation, and to the technological innovations that are taking the industry forward."

Xavier Bettel, Prime Minister, Luxembourg, spoke of the transformation currently underway in this digital era, and the tremendous potential impact which we cannot afford to miss. "None of us can afford to miss the train. In Luxembourg we consider impact of digital as a huge opportunity to create value and make the world a better place."

Speaking of the opportunities and challenges the fast-changing and evolving ICT ecosystem holds for Vanuatu, Mr. Charlot Salwai Tabimasmas, Prime Minister and Minister responsible for ICT and Telecommunications added "We value learning from experiences of other countries, and note synergies and cost efficiencies that could be achieved in designing, implementing, or advocating certain initiatives on a regional or international level."

Crown Prince Tupouto'a' Ulukalala of the Kingdom of Tonga outlined the importance of inspiring collaboration, explaining how ITU Telecom World itself, "This annual flagship event has inspired Tonga as the first Pacific country to liberalize its telecoms sector in 2002. In a short time the benefits were realized."

Prajin Juntong, Deputy Prime Minister and Acting Minister of Digital Economy and Society, Kingdom of Thailand, spoke of taking inspiration from His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej's many innovative ICT projects and legacy, ensuring that "ICT is not for those who can afford it but we must allow those who are most in need to benefit from it to not be left behind."

Mukhisa Kituyi, Secretary-General, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) commended the unique strengths of the event, providing dialogue between international organizations and the private sector to "collectively identify opportunities and challenges." He also took the opportunity to inform delegates that UNCTAD was today joining the EQUALS initiative, which aims to tackle the gender digital divide.

Commending ITU as a "platform to manage the emerging digital ecosystem," Hamad Obaid Al Mansoori, Director General of Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA), United Arab Emirates, challenged delegates, as they began the week's debates, with topical questions such as "Can we ignore the value of collaboration?" or "Are we making sure we are applying enough innovation?"

Following the Forum Opening, debates began in earnest with the Leadership Summit, which convened highest-level experts from public and private sectors to explore why working together is so important for growing the digital economy.

During the 4 days of the event, Forum sessions will delve into an exciting set of topics such as artificial intelligence, how ICTs can meet the UN's Sustainable development goals (SDGs), intelligent transport systems and autonomous (driverless) vehicles, digital financial inclusion and fintech and financial incentives to invest in the global roll out of ICT infrastructure, collaborative innovation and the tech-SME ecosystem.

Parallel to the Forum, the Exhibition will showcase digital solutions and investment opportunities from governments and industry from both emerging and developed markets, including tech-SMEs.

During the week, participants will be able to learn more on the ITU Telecom World Awards,recognizing excellence and innovation in ICT solutions with social impact from SMEs and corporates alike. Winners will be announced during the closing ceremony on 17 November.

ITU Telecom World 2016 will also provide perspectives from across ITU and its membership and partners, with a host of exciting co-hosted events from across the ITU community.

It will also include a number of important agreements and contracts signed between Governments, Regulatory bodies and the private sector.

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Telecom Review Summit 2016

Digital Magazine

Feb 2017

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