The concept of ‘multi-service convergence’ or ‘integration of multiple services on the same platform’ has become familiar to Vietnamese. Experts have pointed out that service convergence is inevitable.
According to Pyramid Research, mobile network operators in developed countries have become service providers which allow customers to use many different services at the same time in the same integrated service package.
The integrated service packages could be Triple-Play, a marketing term for the provisioning, over a single broadband connection, of telephone, internet and television, or Quad-Play, which offers four kinds of services in the same service package – telephone, internet, television and wireless access.
Virgin Media, Orange, SFR, Free, ONO and Movistar are the best known Triple-play and Quad-play service providers. In 2014, Triple-play brought $40-50 million to the companies, while Quad-play $50-80 million. Triple-play and Quad-play now have the majority of users – 40 percent for the former and 48 percent for the latter.
Experts pointed out that the combination of telecoms and television can bring strength for the service convergence.
Cao Minh Thang from the Posts and Telecommunications Institute of Technology, said the convergence was seen clearly when cell phones with internet connection allowed users to watch TV anytime, anywhere and on all devices.
The inevitable corollary of convergence is the interaction which is understood as the exchange of viewpoints and information between television and the audience. TV users can determine what, when and what channels to watch.
In the future, TV interaction can even go further. It can make viewers feel as if they are sitting at studios and creating TV program content. The Virtual Reality (VR) technology can bring people to multidimensional TV programs through sensors. The devices, when put on the body, will obtain the body’s movements, including the smallest ones, thus allowing to interact directly with the program content.
Like developed countries, Vietnamese are familiar with the concept of service convergence.
BKAV’s SmartHome solution, for example, is the integration of mechanical engineering, internet and telecom. BIDV’s e-office project utilizes Viettel’s Office One solution. Meanwhile, the application allowing to sell tickets online has been designed by FPT for the railway corporation.
MobiFone, a big player in the telecom sector, has taken a strong move in the ‘convergence game’ by taking over AVG, a television company. Acquiring a television is a strategic decision in the path of becoming a multi-service corporation. This will allow it to satisfy different demands of customers for services at any time and on any device.
In the future, MobiFone will become a provider of multiple services including telecom, IT, television, retail and multimedia. These services will create a ‘MobiFone ecosystem’.