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Get the latest announcements from MEF Members across the mobile ecosystem globally in this weekly review of member news…

Vox Solutions is exclusive partner in aggregation of the A2P Voice traffic for Megafon Tajikistan, first flash call monetization partnership in the market

HONG KONG, Nov. 29, 2022 – MegaFon Tajikistan (TT Mobile CJSC), the first operator of new digital opportunities and leading mobile telecom operator in Tajikistan, has signed an exclusive partnership with Vox Solutions to help identify Application to Person (A2P) voice (Flash Call) traffic and combat fraudulent routing and illicit bypass attempts, using VOX Solution’s VOX360 anti-fraud platform.

According to Juniper Research, the market size of flash calls is estimated to be 5 bn calls in 2022, growing 25+ times over next few years, reaching 128 bn calls in 2026 (128% CAGR).

The VOX360 platform is the most comprehensive A2P traffic (Voice & SMS) protection solution available on the market, enabling mobile operators to detect and block spam and fraudulent traffic before they impact end users, thus optimizing the monetization of their networks. VOX360 is also the only platform in the industry which can mitigate Flash calls as part of its full suite of A2P Voice and SMS anti-fraud solution, which means that potentially, MegaFon Tajikistan will be protected from Flash calls fraudulent activities.

“We are very excited to be the trusted exclusive A2P Voice partner for another leading communication service provider. This is an important milestone in becoming the A2P voice & messaging partner of choice in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). It also represents a great recognition of Vox Solutions’ capability to offer the highest quality and security of international A2P Voice identification and delivery at large-scale” says Ehsan Ahmadi, CEO of VOX Solutions. “Ultimately, we are here to help mobile operators, such as MegaFon Tajikistan, to optimize the monetization of their assets and ensure long term revenue growth and innovation, and also to help global brands reach their customers with the best response time, wherever they are.”

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BICS Bridges 5G SA Roaming Between Europe, Middle East

Global communications company BICS announced the first established roaming connection between the 5G standalone (SA) networks of Belgian operator Proximus and stc Kuwait based in the Middle East.

The connection marks BICS’ latest efforts to interlink telecommunication ecosystems globally and the first move to intercontinentally link live 5G SA networks in a non-lab environment.

The networks’ connection was secured through a security edge protection proxy (SEPP), in accordance with GSMA’s mandated roaming guidelines hosted on BICS’ internetwork packet exchange (IPX).

“Until now, operators around the world have only been delivering 5G non-standalone (NSA) roaming that routes traffic through 4G/LTE core,” BICS VP Mikaël Schachne stated in the release. “By establishing 5G SA roaming, we’ve broken down the barriers to bring the power of this technology to international communications. This is an important step for the industry, and accelerates the benefits of 5G to potential consumers and enterprises around the world,” he continued.

CEO of solutions by stc Mohammed N. Al-Nusif added that the breakthrough will be important for the industry at large but will also provide “5G roaming spanning the widest coverage area across the world. It’s going to bring stc customers exceptional connectivity at high-data speeds and offer them the same 4G and 5G data plans at no additional costs when abroad,” he stated.

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The consumer protection challenge facing mobile service providers

Mobile services today are considered both economically and socially important – which is why the more than 5-billion consumers that currently connect via these services require regulatory protection.

A key challenge, however, has always been to provide the necessary levels of protection, while also ensuring users have control over their privacy and personal data.

The various threats faced by consumers, the necessity for effective consumer protection and the latest trends in this space were among the key topics discussed at the Mobile Ecosystem Forum (MEF) Africa Roundtable, held at the recent AfricaCom event.

Key panelists included Dario Betti, CEO at MEF, Rajiv Singla, CEO Global Messaging at Globe Teleservices, Ananstasia Ivanets, Business Development Manager, Lanck Telecom and Ilonka Badenhorst, Managing Executive, WASPA.

Badenhorst points out that when it comes to consumer protection in the mobile environment, the tendency is to think of fraud as the key challenge but, she notes, there are a multitude of other potential threats that they also face and that this is expected to escalate in 2023.

“What consumers are facing in respect of threats today is much broader than mere fraud. There are content risks, related to potential exposure to harmful, hateful or inappropriate and illegal content, not to mention disinformation risks,” she says. “In addition, there are conduct risks – instances where the consumer’s own conduct puts them at risk and leaves them vulnerable to threats or harassment – and contact risks, which are usually issues related to unwanted or unwarranted messages, as well as online fraud, scams and phishing attacks.”

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Infobip releases 30th Anniversary of the SMS Report

SEATTLE–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Infobip, a global leader in omnichannel communications, today announced new data from its 2022 “30th Anniversary of the SMS” survey, which sheds light on how, where and when Americans are communicating with each other.

The report was commissioned to commemorate the anniversary of the first text message, sent on Dec. 3, 1992, by Neil Papworth, a software programmer from the U.K. who had been working as a developer and test engineer to create a short message service (SMS). That very first text simply said, “Merry Christmas.” In the three decades that ensued, SMS has exploded in popularity, and today, the humble text message has emerged as the go-to form of communication for billions of people and an ever increasing number of businesses.

Polling more than 1,000 consumers across the U.S., Infobip’s survey found that Americans would rather communicate via SMS, Whatsapp or another form of instant messaging (41%) than a phone call (24%). This trend was even more apparent among younger respondents — with approximately half of Gen Zers (48%) and millennials (53%) preferring messaging over calling, and Americans having fully embraced the text message as an integral tool of daily life.

“The findings show that SMS and other chat and messaging options are the most effective means of communication at our fingertips,” said Silvio Kutić, co-founder and CEO of Infobip. “As the way we communicate evolves, we are seeing more engagement between consumers and businesses. In the future, consumers will be increasingly connected to the brands they love, as businesses continue to meet people where they are — on their phones.”

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Swisscom Starts Offering 5G FWA Services for Enterprise Customers

Swisscom Business customers can now take advantage of the 5G FWA Services launched by the telco on Thursday. With Swisscom’s 5G Fixed Wireless Access Services (FWA), B2B customers can now install a fixed internet connection at their business sites using 5G technology. This service facilitates business customers without fixed-line access to connect to their corporate network using 5G wireless technologies.

With this service/solution, Swisscom is enabling the fastest Internet available to Business customers in locations of temporary business sites and in areas where standard network expansion is not possible. Swisscom is using 5G Mobile Access to augment its fixed network infrastructure and increase the availability of ultra-broadband with bandwidths of up to 1 Gbps.

Friederike Hoffmann, Head of Connected Business Solutions at Swisscom, says: “5G FWA offers great potential for our business customers. They can use it to benefit from the fastest Internet at their sites and be ready to make full use of all services.”

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Springboard recruits call rating information from XConnect

Business information company has signed up with XConnect to validate voice traffic and prevent surcharges for local and global service providers.

Springboard – whose customers and partners include Cataleya, KT’s Epsilon and C3entro Telecom – said it will be able to highlight number discrepancies in real time and support customers in resolving issues rapidly to ensure stable margins.

Tim Ward (pictured), VP of number information services at XConnect, said: “Across Europe, OBR implementations are being deployed and are creating volatile and uncertain billing situations for service providers. In a competitive market with tight margins, this can have serious consequences and taking steps to validate calls is becoming necessary.”

Andrew Whitelaw, founder and CEO at Springboard, said: “By adopting XConnect’s GNR [global number range] service, we’re not only increasing our portfolio for new customers, but also enhancing what we offer our existing and loyal users. We are continually evolving our platform to meet our customer’s needs and our partnership with XConnect is the next step in doing that.”

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