CES 2016: What does it predict for mobile operators?

By Mika Skarp

Last week in Las Vegas over 20,000 new products were released at CES. From robot BBQ cleaners to the Somabar automated cocktail mixer and drones, drones drones, 2016 certainly hasn't disappointed so far.

And Needless to say, this represents a herculean amount of work put in developing all of the these products. What's perhaps most interesting though, and in stark contrast to the decades of CES' that have gone before, is the built-in interdependence of all of these devices as they find their physical place in your home, and their digital place in the cloud. While the idea of a cloudified doorbell seems like a pretty simple practical thing, the dream of your coffee maker talking to your refrigerator is getting closer and closer. 

In fact, it's less a matter of smart home luxuries, but soon a matter of mandatory legal requirement that no device be out of reach of network. Many suggest that the so-called dumb devices we now use will sooner than we think no longer be available, and that you will have no choice but to let google track your presence in your home by smart thermostat. 

As we move past the dreamy gadgets to the networks that will be supporting them, we look forward to the upcoming Mobile Work Conference in Barcelona in February. Network slicing or application aware network will be the main theme of MWC16, and perhaps answer the pervading question of how all of these smart, cloudified, ever connected devices will also be reliable and predictable.

Last Christmas, Cloudstreet made a press release about delivering the very first Dynamic Profile Controller (DPC) to LTE network. As necessity is ever the mother of invention, this breakthrough was not geared toward smart home convenience but the rather more critical application of helping first responders maintain flawless connectivity. 

As we discussed in the announcement, using and managing network profiles makes it easy to provide guaranteed service levels for different applications. The DPC also provides the opportunity to increase network capacity, and eliminate congestion while overall service levels improve. This capability comes as boon to builders, buyers and planners of network infrastructure who look to provide enough capacity, and effectively manage it without breaking the bank.

It didn't take CES 2016 to alert us to the increasingly diverse needs of our expanding array devices and applications.  It is now widely understood that different applications have different requirement to network, next step is to start serving different application and monetize this opportunity. The question for technology heads now, is will our networks be as smart as the devices that need them to run properly.

For anyone attending the World Mobile Conference in Barcelona, we'd love to get a chance to meet and provide a demo of Cloudstreet. We'll be the GE pavilion at the show if you are walking the floor.