The world has been hit by an unimaginable impasse. The coronavirus or COVID-19 has irrevocably transformed lives and industries in the most startling ways. The pandemic has directly resulted in the near-complete shutdown of all social and economic activity across the globe. Considering that there is no modern precedent to such a catastrophe in existence that can inform us of what lies ahead, the road to recovery will undoubtedly be a long and arduous one. Even with the inevitable risks and damages the pandemic has caused to major industries, the communications sector has managed to overcome these hurdles and has continued to remain relevant during this period.

Read more: Answering the call to serve during a global crisis

As the Chief Growth Officer at Bankai Group and member of the Pacific Telecommunications Council Organization (PTC), Nakul Rege is responsible for successfully expanding the Group's footprint globally across all segments – wholesale, retail and technology solutions. Telecom Review explores PTC’s vast influence on the ICT sector and what this means for the future of telecoms in the Pacific Rim.

Read more: PTC spearheads success of ICT industry in the Pacific

In the last decade, we have witnessed an explosion of global interconnectivity, further enhanced by the arrival of a cache of emerging technologies ranging from biometrics to blockchain. Unfortunately, increased interconnectivity also means increased privacy and security risks such as illegal robocalls or scam calls posing a threat to enterprises and how they communicate with customers. Robocalls have become a rampant issue and have been responsible for destroying trust in calls and negative impacts to businesses in countries across the globe. Fortunately, recent developments have put operators one step closer to stomping out illegal calls, and this is where Neustar steps in to ease the burden.  

Read more: “Trusted connections” at the core of Neustar’s success

Access to the latest and greatest in emerging technologies places us in a favorable position as a society when it comes to combatting the pandemic. COVID-19 has essentially affected the entire world, not just in terms of health, but has also placed many businesses and entire industries at risk and has forced us all to work and learn from home. This has caused quite the disruption and many organizations and governments across the world are working tirelessly to put an end to the crisis in recent months.

Read more: Big data: A force to be reckoned with in the time of COVID-19

The telecommunications industry in the Asia Pacific region is one that is simultaneously rich in history and revolutionary in its vision for the future. In the past couple of decades, we have witnessed radical transformations within the industry worldwide as a growing number of consumers with smart devices are continuously demanding for higher bandwidths and larger data to enhance their digital experience. This predicament is no different in Asia Pacific, where the number of mobile subscribers has grown exponentially; 2.8 billion people in the year ending 2018. According to the GSMA, it is estimated that 370 million more new subscribers will be added by 2025; equivalent to 72% of the population or 3.1 billion, with many of these new users hailing from China and India.

Read more: An era of tremendous progress for telcos in Asia Pacific

According to Deloitte, 2020 is the ‘Year of 5G’ as businesses start to understand the benefits and limitations of the technology and we start to see the first wave of solutions based on 5G begin to emerge. With the arrival of 5G networks, including network slicing with service level agreements (SLAs), comes fast, high volume, low latency data streams that provide a whole host of new business opportunities in IoT devices, autonomous vehicles, and augmented reality.

Read more: Harnessing the power of data in 5G networks

Recently, China Telecom officially announced the results of its 2019 centralized PON equipment procurement, which has a total value of 1.2 billion Yuan, and includes three bid packages: GPON, 10G-EPON and XG-PON. Among them, the number of new-built GPON ports reaches 19,000, 10G-EPON ports reaches 210,000, and XG-PON ports reaches 396,000. That is, the number of 10G PON ports accounts for more than 97% of the total number of new-built ports.

Read more: Embracing the mutual development of fixed broadband and 5G

A smart city is an urban area that uses different types of electronic Internet of Things (IoT) sensors to collect data, using it to manage assets, resources and services efficiently. Smart cities look at all aspects like mobility, public safety, governance and health, improving existing local institutions, digitising access to employment while maintaining the security of their citizens, and Singapore is a nation that is recognised for its efforts in successfully doing this.

Read more: What we can learn from Singapore’s Smart Nation initiative

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