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DTW Ignite. But what’s igniting?

DTW Ignite Event

The TMForum’s Digital Transformation World event is only a few weeks away now. What can we expect to hear and learn about in Copenhagen?

As ever, the clue is in the name: Digital Transformation. Still, the term – a somewhat bland not to mention overused one these days – doesn’t tell us much. Dig a little deeper into the Forum’s literature though and we learn that the topic of conversation in Copenhagen is likely to focus on the shift from being a Digital Telco Era to an AI-Native Telco. So it’s Artificial Intelligence then that’s really catching fire.

That seems fair enough. Across domains – not just in the telcoms industry – AI is making its presence felt. But it’s worth pausing by way of preparation for DTW to consider exactly what becoming an AI-Native telco means. Let’s address that question in this blog.

AI native in 5 key steps

For a telco (or for that matter any other company), being AI Native refers to the degree and manner in which Artificial Intelligence technologies are fundamentally integrated into the way business is conducted; that means operations, products, and services. In other words, being native refers to the use of AI as being deeply embedded into corporate processes, rather than being used as a functionality sometimes “sitting on top of” legacy procedures. Looking at exactly how AI can manifest itself makes the difference between the two clearer.

  1. In the AI native telco, Artificial Intelligence is a core strategy rather than an occasional feature. This means it’s a central part of all decision-making processes, product development, and business planning.
  2. In an AI-native telco, there’s an instinctive understanding that data drives commerce and, therefore, data collection, normalization, analysis, and utilization are priority functions and areas for investment. These telcos understand that AI systems are powered by and therefore as good as the vast amounts of data required to feed them (so they can learn and improve) so supporting the data infrastructure is a bedrock function.
  3. Many telcos have products and services enabled or improved by AI. The AI-native telco designs everything with AI at its core. These companies don’t use AI to “put lipstick on the pig” of legacy procedures and solutions (in areas like network optimization, customer experience, analytics, and others). They redesign the entire pig so AI is integrated into it!
  4. AI-native telcos use AI to automate numerous previously unwieldy actions, for instance to streamline processes, reduce manual labour, and improve efficiency in areas ranging from customer service to network maintenance and optimization. In other words, processing information via AI drives downstream actions.
  5. The use of AI is active, rather than passive. The AI native telco doesn’t simply accept AI for what it is now; it engages with the technology to drive business forward. For example, it experiments with and develops new algorithms, it engages with new technologies like machine learning, and it adapts to changes in the AI landscape proactively, as they happen. It doesn’t just buy AI-based solutions; it works to self-develop them.

Of course, there’s more. AI-native telcos use AI to enhance the customer experience. They structure themselves to support AI initiatives, with AI dedicated teams. And they encourage employees to upskill in AI-related domains. In all these areas, DTW may well provide something of a primer or roadmap for how telcos can integrate AI into their organisations, as more than just a technology but rather as a core aspect of their corporate strategies and operations.


DTW is a major event in the telecoms year. If you’re planning to attend, please get in touch to discuss how we can help you maximise the RoI from your marketing investment. Meanwhile, keep reading the eCS blog to stay ahead of the learning curve.

To learn how eCS can help your turn DTW Ignite into a lead generation success, click here >

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