We all know the frustration that comes when you cannot get access to the information you need, whether its online banking, the lateset YouTube sensation or weather update. In fact for many years, Internet Service Providers took the view that if they could ‘ping’ the customer’s gateway, then the Internet Service was fine. Any remaining issues belonged to the customer.
The problem with this approach is that the customer does not buy ‘the Internet’ – instead they are looking to use that particular service; Facebook, Google, etc; and if they cannot access these things, then ‘the Internet’ is broken – and it is the service provider’s fault.
Forward thinking providers soon concluded that they needed to support their customers to access the things that matter to them. Otherwise customers would deduce that their service was no good and switch providers. Indeed most customers cannot understand why the Internet doesn’t just work.
The solution? Remote device management. It’s a major tool for combating churn because it improves the customer experience, especially in that critical first 28 days. Get it right at the beginning and customers tend to hang around. Later in their journey, when they add that new gizmo, it too has to just work, and again device management provides the means to automate, diagnose and fix the customer’s home networking challenges.
Making things ‘just work’ is a complex relationship between the technology and the rest of the service providers’ infrastructure. With correctly designed workflows it should be entirely possible for a customer to purchase a new service online, and have that service delivered and deployed in a fully automated fashion. The fewer human interventions that are needed, the fewer opportunities for mistakes. Remote Device Management enables the gap between services and systems to be bridged, and thus reducing the Call Centre contact and the truck roll.
There has been much debate about whether the home gateway should be a simple device that just handles connectivity, or whether a more complex device with greater functionality is the way to go. Either way, the service provider has to invest in the CPE that is deployed, and remote device management enables service providers to maximise this investment through the capability to upgrade firmware to enhance functionality, or to fix faults and thus avoid the need to send a replacement.
With the customer experience at the heart of every device management task, it is easy to see how providers can enhance service levels, improve customer retention levels, reduce the time customers have to spend on the phone to the service desk, and get the most out of their investment in customer premises equipment.
For these reasons, ETI Software has added Vision ACS to its product set. It features the full TR-069 functional device management protocol for home gateways, set top boxes, VoIP telephones, power line adapters and more. It is fully integrated into and supplements the ETI OSS provisioning suite, which in turn handles 70+ technology interfaces and 20+ billing integrations out of the box.
And that is just the tip of the iceberg. With daily new developments in the range of devices being integrated into the Connected Home and other Internet of Things implementations, ACS TR-069 device management is jumping to the forefront of broadband technologies. In fact, ETI’s software is being used to manage things as diverse as buses, fuel tank levels and intelligent traffic cones, in addition to the core business of home gateways, set top boxes, VoIP telephones, power line adapters and many others.
Craig Settles from CJ Speaks has recently authored, Revving the Community Broadband Economic Engine, a study on economic development and broadband in the United States. A transcript of his interview with the Broadband Bunch is below.more
The trend of connecting devices to the network, in the home, office, and even city is exploding. But the reality is, we’re just getting started!more