Large organizations and telecommunication service providers are now facing a new, big challenge of handling big data – structured and unstructured – generated from mobile devices that connect to the Internet all the time. What’s more, there are data which come from smart devices that connect to the “Internet of Things” – a circumstance where every device can automatically connect to the Internet and communicate to one another.
All of these factors have contributed to large amounts of data running on the Internet and intranets. The data include images, audio files, text messages, and data transfer on the Internet. The telecom providers need to handle data generated from device communications and also a huge set of data that is travelling in their networks. This posts a new challenge in terms of data handling and network bandwidth management.
On the other hand, big data can create a new business opportunity for vendors who can come up with new ways of making income or creating new products that can help address the issue.
Business opportunities from Big Data
Effective usage and revenue generation from big data are contributed by overall data management methods including procedures for data storing, logging, searching, and analyzing. The real value of big data comes from advanced data analysis through data mining, statistical analysis tools, data optimization and forecasting. These capabilities can transform a large amount of data into useful pieces of information which can be used to drive business and support decision making.
Some telecommunication providers have provided services for their large organization and retail customers to access big data, which are then used to support the decision making for new store opening. For example, big data analysis could determine customer behaviors in each geographical area, i.e. the number of customers who walk past the stores daily; the ratio of male and female customers in each period of the day; the number of customers who actually live in the same area at the store; and the store that is most visited by target customers. Another recent example was the cooperation between Google and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to use big data for predicting yearly flu trends to find prevention.
To overcome challenges and achieve real business values, organizations must upgrade their IT infrastructure as well as build knowledge on data repository and business models – all of which will facilitate data handling and drive revenue generation from big data.