The 2017 Sprint Business Analyst Day: Update on Sprint’s Strategy and Roadmap

Jun 16, 2017

Introduction

Frost & Sullivan’s analyst team recently attended the 2017 Sprint Business Analyst Day where Sprint shared information on its product strategy and roadmap for the enterprise segment.  At a very high level, following are the key elements of the next-generation competitive strategy for Sprint Business:

  • A converged network with high capacity, faster speeds, flexible pricing and global coverage.
  • A BYO-ReadyTM program to deliver flexibility and choices to business customers by enabling them to work in a carrier, device, or platform independent manner.
  • An “as-a-service” model with predictable pricing and mobile-centric productivity solutions.
  • Bend-over-BackwardTM support designed to help customers through in-region tech support as well as global account teams.
  • New product offerings – including a renewed focus on a solutions-based approach – in both wireless and wireline enterprise communication and collaboration markets.
  • Renewed focus on the Internet of Things (IoT) market opportunity. As part of the Softbank group, Sprint is poised to build on its successes in IoT and become a global provider of IoT solutions.

The Sprint Network

Sprint’s network and spectrum assets are important differentiators for the company. The following are the highlights of Sprint’s network strategy:

  • Spectrum and technologies: apart from owning extensive spectrum assets in the 800 MHz, 1.9 GHz and 2.5 GHz bands, Sprint has also invested in technologies such as carrier aggregation and massive MIMO, small cell technologies, and high power user equipment, or HPUE to deliver cutting edge wireless services.
  • Preparing for 5G: the company is preparing to usher in 5G services in an efficient manner where its 2.5 GHz spectrum holdings should enable it to support ultra-fast network speeds.
  • Converged network: Sprint is implementing advanced network core technologies to migrate from proprietary hardware to efficient and scalable virtualized network solutions.
  • Global roaming: Sprint has also introduced the Sprint Global Roaming service that enables international roaming in more than 200 destinations and is available at no extra cost to users with compatible smartphones. And in 167 out of those 200 destinations basic data is included at no additional cost with calls charged at only $0.20/minute. 

Exhibit shows the nationwide, population-weighted average spectrum assets for the U.S tier-1 mobile operators as of April 13, 2017.

 Sprint.jpg

                                                                                                                     Source: Sprint

 

Focus on Services and Solutions

Sprint’s focus is on offering a portfolio of enterprise communication, collaboration and productivity solutions to businesses. Highlights include:

  • Offer mobile productivity solutions: Sprint is expected to offer mobile-centric productivity solutions that can run in enterprise, BYO or hybrid environments and are aligned with Sprint’s as-a-service strategy.
  • Adopt a managed services approach: on the wireline front, Sprint is committed to investments in technologies to support its migration from traditional transport to managed solutions provider. It has also introduced software defined-WAN (SD-WAN) services in the U.S. to address business demands for efficiency, agility and performance, and is expected to offer SD-WAN capabilities for wholesale customers and in international locations in the coming months.
  • Focus on exceptional customer care and support: both wireless and wireline services for enterprise customers will be backed by expert support. This will ensure that businesses can leverage Sprint’s offerings in the right way and can get maximum value from their investments in Sprint’s solutions.  

Resurgence of IoT

Sprint firmly believes that IoT is essential to helping it get closer to its enterprise customers and ultimately helping its enterprise customers get closer to their customers. Sprint’s IoT strategy can be summarized as:

  • A three-legged go-to-market strategy: including enablement solutions, end-to-end solutions, and custom implementations to address all major opportunities in IoT.
  • Prioritize verticals: leverage deep IoT expertise across the multiple vertical markets, including transportation and telematics, retail, healthcare, security, and smart cities.
  • Offer application enablement platforms: Sprint is expected to introduce an application lifecycle management platform for IoT.
  • Partnership-led model: Sprint’s strategic partnerships with IoT MVNOs and other enablement providers is a key driver for the company’s growth in IoT.

Conclusion

By offering differentiated solutions for business mobility, voice and collaboration, multi-mode networking, security and IoT, Sprint is positioning itself to make a stronger play in the enterprise communication market.  With Sprint successfully managing the turnaround in its mobility and wireline business, the company is poised to re-invest in IoT and differentiate with its agility and ability to respond quickly to customer demands. Support from the parent company, Softbank, is also a significant benefit that will help the company innovate at scale in the US – and global – communication markets. 


Vikrant Gandhi

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Fourteen years of product marketing, research, and consulting expertise, which includes supporting clients’ needs through more than 140 syndicated market research deliverables and consulting assignments. Particular expertise in Assessing next-generation telecommunications trends, technologies and market dynamics; Helping clients develop and execute their go-to-market strategies; Providing continuous inputs to clients into new market developments and helping them understand the strategic implications.


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