One of the most recent emerging trends is the bundling of security features, in particular cloud-based solutions, as a value-added service for FTTH and other top-tiered/high revenue-generation broadband offers for SME customers (e.g. FTTC/VDSL). This is already the strategy of SingTel that, while it still offers ADSL to SME customers, pushes its FTTH services and uses cloud-based security as part of its USP.
Another trend that may be observed in the future, possibly as a response to the increasing threats to privacy and network integrity, is the offer of Unified Threat Management (UTM) solutions to SME customers. Currently, this is only available on a standalone basis and so far, only for large enterprises. In India, Tata Communications is offering a cloud-based UTM service for SMEs, but only for leased line customers. TEO LT and Orange France are also offering an appliance-based UTM service to SME customers, but only as a standalone solution. We imagine that cloud-based UTM solutions will be increasingly part of the broadband offers to SMEs in the future, but more specifically bundled as a value-added service for top-tiered packages. These UTM solutions typically include, anti-virus, anti-spam, anti-spyware, firewalls, content filtering, IDS/IPS, authentication, vulnerability scans and secure remote and VPN access.
Finally, there is an increasing tendency to offer Internet security as part of a tiered package that consists of mobile device security and basic data recovery (including storage). Bell Canada’s approach is one example. The company offers Internet security with its lower-end VDSL offer. Then for its higher-end VDSL and FTTH services, the carrier bundles Internet security, mobile device security and data recovery in the packages. This up-selling approach may be a way to attract business customers to invest in these higher revenue-generating services. But beyond that, these services are becoming increasingly relevant in a bring-your-own-device environment and in companies with very high mobile workforce ratios.