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Cloudfone Visitor Service - a 'roam like a local' Cloud service for mobile operators

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - Cloudfone (Cloudfone Visitor Service - a 'roam like a local' Cloud service for mobile operators)

Reporting period: 2016-06-01 to 2016-10-31

The Internet and digital technologies transform our world rapidly and at the same time create new opportunities for large businesses, SMEs and entrepreneurs. It became possible to propose and swiftly implement the new revolutionary ideas that would change the way we used to work, communicate, exchange and manage daily tasks, anywhere where mobile communications have been taking a central place.

The increasing trend of citizens’ mobility worldwide requires seamless interactions per their mobile phones. International calling-rates and roaming cost of mobile communications set restrictions on exchanges many people would prefer to have for their business and personal communications.

IPCO addresses the challenge by offering an open disruptive innovation, specifically by proposing a Cloudfone Visitor Service (CVS) for frequent business travelers, multi-national businesses, foreign workers and long-term tourists. The service will enable the mobile phone users who are in a foreign country to be recognized as local mobile network customers while keeping the same mobile number from a home country as well as the same SIM card. The service eventually would lead to minimization of roaming cost especially for the EU citizens travelling to non-EU countries and vice versa.

IPCO has performed a feasibility study to verify the Cloudfone Visitor Service concept with live demonstrations on mobile infrastructure and standard mobile end-user devices in order to generate the interest and commitment of targeted stakeholders and build a customer satisfaction and confidence while seeking to provide a disruptive innovative solution to the large mobile operators on a global scale.

The feasibility study has verified that the Cloudfone Visitor Service concept gives EU citizens the projected benefits, is possible to implement, attracts interests with potential customers and have a significant market potential.
IPCOs conclusion from the action is to continue with the implementation of the proposed service.
The work in the feasibility study has been focused on:
• To demonstrate the prototype in a Proof-of-Concept test in operational customer mobile network
• To confirm interest and commitment of potential business partners and end-consumers
• To prepare a business and deployment plan
• To create awareness about the proposed service and the project itself

IPCO has developed a CVS demonstrator for live demonstrations using commercial mobile telephones, commercial mobile infrastructure and the IPCO Cloudfone platform. The demonstrator has been developed together with a potential customer and has given valuable insights into the technological challenges and possibilities – as well as risks for the implementation. As an outcome of the demonstration a clearer picture of the tasks needed for implementation has been formulated.

During the project IPCO has held bi-lateral meetings with a number of potential customers and partners for an implementation. The meetings and discussions have given valuable insights in market strategy, market potential and confirmed interest in the CVS service. With partners the discussions have given further insights into technical implementation, potential use of state of the art technologies in the value chain and cost base to be expected with a commercial launch of the service.

IPCO has analysed the traveling statistics, immigration statistics and roaming traffic statistics in Europe in order to assess the market potential and possible impact on society. Together with information gained from potential customers and partners, this information has been used to create budgets and market projections. The plans verify the market potential of the service and supports a decision to implement the service.

The heightened understanding of the technological possibilities and potential use of state of the art technologies in the IPCO Cloudfone platform has been used to create a detailed plan for implementation as well as a well understood cost basis for implementation.

IPCO has worked actively to disseminate information on the possible impact of Cloudfone Visitor Service during the project; participating in conferences for SMEs, project presentations in national and international innovation workshops and seminars, getting publicity through public magazines, publishing information on our website, using social media where applicable and through bi-lateral meetings with >30 potential customers.
The feasibility study shows that Cloudfone Visitor service has a far-reaching potential to benefit EU citizens.

Quality of life: The empowerment of individuals through Cloudfone Visitor Service will have an immediate effect on an improved user experience and would directly contribute to their quality of life. Economic benefits for individuals have been explained in sections above, however quality of life improvement involves not only monetary benefits. Thanks to CVS individuals will be able to communicate seamlessly with family members, friends and colleagues, thus will be keeping their interpersonal relations at a more comfortable zone. This will have an impact on the acceptance of new environments (e.g. foreign country) by smoothening and shortening the adaptation period. Therefore, at a large extent Cloudfone Visitor Service will open more communication opportunities, comfort and trust to individuals directly contributing to their quality of life.

Health and safety: The activities planned in the project will ensure that personal data protection and security functionalities would be implemented by design. Therefore, it will raise the level of confidence in using common end-user devices for privacy-sensitive applications. Moreover, the project outcomes will contribute to mental health of individuals because they would be able to pay a careful attention to relations left back home and would be able to benefit from these relations.