The blockchain in the telecom market was valued at USD 151.93 million in 2020 and is expected to reach USD 677.66 million by 2026, at a CAGR of 28.3% over the forecast period 2021 - 2026. Increasing adoption of 5G is a catalyst for blockchain implementation in telecom, as 5G is helping in quick and reliable blockchain operation.
- Telecommunications or telecom fraud is a fast-growing field of criminal activity. According to Europol’s European Cybercrime Centre and Trend Micro, telecom fraud costs USD 32.7 billion annually to the world. It represents a new challenge for law enforcement agencies. Blockchain can help in fraud detection and prevention for communication service providers. - Scalability and interoperability are the factors necessary for blockchain adoption. This is only possible when industry standards are set, which is at a lagging phase right now. Telecom sector is struggling with mass adoption of blockchain technology.
Key Market Trends Smart Contract to Dominate the Market
- Smart contracts allow computer code to execute on its own when specific conditions are met. In the telecom industry, it is expected to witness significant adoption as it provides scope for automation in their internal operations, like billing, supply chain management, and roaming. - Deploying smart contracts manage all of the billing related to roaming can lead to significant cost savings, as it provides prevention against fraudulent traffic. - Currently, transactions within the telcos ledgers go through a clearing-house to be authenticated. However, the adoption of smart contracts can automate this process leading to the elimination of post-processing, which saves time for the companies. - Furthermore, in doing so, telcos also save money by spending less on auditing and accounting as the process is automated.
Asia-Pacific to Witness the Highest Growth
- The region boasts of tremendous potential for the market, owing to growing prominence in mobile payments in countries, such as India and China. India, specifically after the demonetization scheme in 2016, has witnessed a lot of Telco’s shifting toward this model. - For instance, Jio and Airtel, the country’s leading telcos, offer their digital wallets to enable customer-to-customer payments. Thus, adoption of blockchain to handle the transactions by these companies could make their wallets more secure and cheaper. - China Mobile, China Telecom, and China Unicom have joined the CAICT’s Trusted Blockchain Initiative, which will use blockchain to bolster operations and security in the industry. The companies are expected to focus on blockchain-based apps that relate to IoT data sharing and customer identity verification.
Competitive Landscape The market is concentrated with few major vendors offering blockchain solutions across industries, including telecommunication. The vendors are also receiving funds from investors, which is further helping in innovative blockchain services.
- July 2019 - South Korea’s largest telecom and the third top conglomerate SK Group invested $10 million in major global blockchain firm ConsenSys for entering into token economy. - February 2019 - SKT partnered with the world’s fifth largest telecom firm, Germany’s Deutsche Telekom, to create a blockchain-enabled mobile identification solution. - July 2018: The global blockchain consortium of telecom carriers, the Carrier Blockchain Study Group (CBSG) announced that Axiata, PLDT, PT. Telin, Turkcell, Viettel, and Zain Group agreed to jointly explore and build a next-generation global cross-carrier blockchain platform and ecosystem
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