Expanding Telecom Horizons with Blockchain Technology
Blockchain technology is upgrading the telecommunications industry by introducing new ways of provisioning security, digital identity, billing, and etc.
Telecommunications is an incredibly complex industry, which requires enormous physical infrastructure, multiparty networks, complex billing systems, roaming agreements, and other services. Blockchain technology implementation may seem like an extra layer of complexity in this complicated industry, but in fact, the introduction of a distributed ledger and smart contacts can simplify all business processes surrounding telecom companies.
Areas of application
Each time when a call or similar activity is initiated, a billing system generates a Charging Data Record file, which later is used to invoice a user. Sending these files to a distributed ledger helps to secure this information and makes it possible to apply smart contracts logic, which can help to automatically execute payments.
Service providers can share parts of their databases via a distributed ledger providing easy access to information about a traveling user. Providers can easily share their tariff plans and automatically invoice users according to certain conditions stated in smart contacts.
Immutable ledger of blockchain technology allows to establish a trustworthy source of records about users identity, devices information, and other information. This is going to reduce fraud attempts, making services more trustworthy and liable.
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T-Mobile uses blockchain for user identification
T-Mobile, one of the largest telecommunications providers in the world, has collaborated with Intel to create a blockchain database for internal use. The solution named as Next Identity Platform is created with Hyperledger Sawtooth.
The platform is used in the company to manage user identity, access, and approvals. In general, the platform is an API that allows for data management on a Hyperledger blockchain. Users can interact with the blockchain through a web-based UI.
Bubbletone — blockchain solution for roaming charges management
Bubbletone is a private blockchain-based telecommunications solution that provides autonomous international roaming charges settlement. The company provides 10+ use cases for their solution.
One of the major goals of the company is to create a Blockchain Telecom Ecosystem, which is going to allow for global roaming provisioning with no special agreements among service providers.
PoC of a roaming blockchain solution by IBM
IBM developed a pilot solution for telecom roaming, fraud, and overage management. The PoC is designed with the help of Hyperledger Fabric and Hyperledger Composer. It demonstrates a direct exchange of information with transactions that are immutable and executed based on consensus model using smart contract rules.
The solution covers 4 use cases, which include identity management, billing execution, fraud and overage prevention. The project is available for developers here.
Still thinking how to apply blockchain to telecommunications industry?