Every service provider is involved in some kind of transformation strategy these days, even if it exists mostly in press releases, but the Leading Lights finalists for Outstanding Transformation Strategy have gone much further to both create and implement a strategy for the digital future that lies ahead.

Two of the transformation strategies are focused on specific industry sectors while the third is a much broader tackling of a network operator’s entire approach. Our three finalists are Colt Technology Services Group Ltd (London: COLT), Strategic Transformation and deployment of the Colt IQ Network, Intelsat Ltd. for its Hybrid Networks for Connected Cars and Reliance Jio for its Tribe: Enterprise Collaboration Suite.

The winners of all 24 Leading Lights awards and the three Women in Comms awards, as well as the identities of this year’s Light Reading Hall of Fame inductees, will be announced at the fantabulous Leading Lights dinner/party, which will be held during the evening of Monday, May 14, at Brazos Hall in Austin, Texas, following a day of pre-BCE workshops. Then, the morning after the awards party, the doors open to this year’s Big Communications Event (BCE) at the Austin Convention Center.

Now let’s take a closer look at the finalists:

Colt
Colt launched its Colt IQ Network in March of 2017, as part of a three-year, almost $6 billion investment to focus on high-bandwidth B2B connectivity. Initially reaching 24,500 buildings and 700 data centers, it has been expanded to 25,600 buildings and 850 data centers globally worldwide, providing Ethernet and IP connectivity at up to 100 Gigabits per second and optical services at up to 9.6 Terabits per second. That expansion initially included Asia PAC markets of Singapore and Hong Kong, and Colt has announced plans to go into Japan and to upgrade its North American connectivity services as well, while also increasing subsea cable capacity on transatlantic, transpacific and Asian routes.

The Colt IQ network is well positioned to support the network operator’s on-demand services in support of cloud services, including software-defined networking and virtual functions with upgraded network, node and cloud access facilities and a greater presence in global data centers. Building on the on-demand capabilities of its Novitas platform, Colt has also been a leader in cross-carrier interconnection efforts and has restructured its internal processes to create a cleaner go-to-market strategy.

Intelsat
The connected car market isn’t waiting around for mobile operators to roll out their 5G services in order to get the required connectivity and Intelsat is taking advantage of that emerging market to launch a hybrid approach of blending satellite and terrestrial networks to meet many of the requirements of the emerging connected car services. Using geostationary satellites for global broadcast; LEO satellites for high-throughput, low-latency communications where LTE/5G is not available; and LTE/5G for streaming and connectivity services in urban areas, Intelsat is ready to go today.

High-throughput satellite systems offer as much or more throughput as existing 4G LTE networks and have the advantage of being available to 99% of the world’s landmass. The use of deeper evolved packet core integration allows seamless handovers between terrestrial and satellite networks for consistent network quality and reliability when cars roam in and out of cellular coverage. In addition, new antenna technology with innovative tracking techniques ensure vehicles on the move maintain satellite connectivity anywhere.

Reliance Jio
The Indian mobile operator known primarily as a greenfield disruptor for its aggressive pricing and deployment models shook the market once more in January by launching its first set of enterprise services. Its innovative Tribe: Enterprise Collaboration Suite is “an enterprise collaboration and network tool suite that brings together the collaboration features of platforms like Facebook, the power of business process model and notation, knowledge and document management, and a powerful arsenal of tools to empower enterprises professionally,” according to the company.

Tribe is intended to improve internal collaboration by allowing project-specific workgroups to share documents, images and more, along with a suite of productivity tools and a voice-enabled smart assistant, known as Genie, that can provide instant access to things such as key performance indicators or Foresight Algorithms as well as alerting site outages, alarms and other pending work. Tribe’s initial pilot projects include Field Operations Automation and Smart Cities management.

To find out which companies were shortlisted across all of this year’s Leading Lights categories, please check out Leading Lights 2018: The Finalists and Congrats to 2018’s WiC Leading Lights Finalists.

— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading

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