FRANKFURT -- Ultra-Broadband Forum 2016 – PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia Tbk. (Telkom) , the incumbent Indonesian operator, is in the midst of transforming from a telco to a "di-co", a provider of digital communications services, according to its vice-president of solutions, Admiral Dasrin.
"Admiral is my name," he hastily clarified, "not my title."
Admiral by rank or by name, Dasrin has been tasked with leading a network strategy that can handle a huge increase in video traffic. Speaking at the Ultra-Broadband Forum in Frankfurt yesterday, Dasrin estimates that 82% of traffic will be video on Telkom's network, and the operator is implementing a rapid ultra-broadband upgrade plan which will see 71% of its subscriber homes receive between 20-100 Mbit/s by 2019.
"We have to create a video-centric network," Dasrin said. "It is the future."
Telkom Indonesia Targets Growth Opportunities
Indonesia's Internet subscriber base is growing at 19% CAGR, the fastest in the world,
according to the operator.
He sees bandwidth readiness as a key element, but also points out other measures the operator has taken to ensure video QoE. Telkom has found there is an aggregation layer bottleneck, which has made his team simplify their network architecture. They also have to store content closer to the consumer through edge caches to improve video QoE.
Telkom's goal is also to leverage video for new service revenue, customer engagement and satisfaction. The company has a three-pronged strategy based on network assets.
Firstly, it provides a direct-to-home satellite service in areas where it still has older copper networks, for no additional charge, with or without a broadband subscription. The entire service is advertising sponsored, and revenue is shared with content partners. (See Advertising Drives Telkom Indonesia's Big Video Strategy.)
To the 12.6 million homes it has passed with fiber, Telkom offers an integrated IPTV and OTT video service, delivered to multiple screens. The service uses Android set-top boxes and has 140 channels. Its OTT offerings include major Asian services such as Singtel's Hooq, PCCW's Viu, Catchplay and iflix, in which Sky recently invested. (See Singtel Uses 4G to Launch Streaming Video Service, Is Sky Eyeing a Global OTT Empire? and PCCW's Lee Discusses OTT Service Viu.)
Telkom plans to add a number of new features it thinks will add value to the service. First of these is video calling from the TV, linking to mobile phones. It also wants to add 8K services in the future, though this is a longer-term plan and still to be determined.
Lastly, Telkom is offering a mobile movie streaming service, Moovigo, to its 157 million mobile subscribers, nearly 60% of which are at least on 3G.
But Telkom wants to go beyond just offering its own services, according to Dasrin. It also wants to be an enabler/mediator, by opening its network to create new applications, like a payment portal for games and other services, and an ad platform for advertising delivery on its networks.
Lastly, Dasrin is looking to actively develop a partnership strategy, launching a music streaming service with SK Telecom, among others.
Despite regional challenges, such as a very diverse population (300 ethnic groups that speak 740 different languages), a scattered population spread across hundreds of small islands and hilly terrain, the operator has fully committed to pushing ahead with a video-centric strategy for the future.
And it has wisely picked an Admiral to lead the charge.
— Aditya Kishore, Practice Leader, Video Transformation, Telco Transformation