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Light Reading Network X Americas
May 21-23, 2024
Irving Convention Center at Las ColinasDallas, Texas

Can telco AI replicate the human factor?

As AI appears to rapidly move from a bit-part to a leading role in most industries, including telecoms, Roz Roseboro, Principal Analyst – Telco AI and Analytics, Omdia, asks, where does this leave the humble human?

Roz Roseboro

Principal Analyst - Telco AI and Analytics


Artificial Intelligence, and its most recent incarnation, Generative AI (GenAI), has captured the imagination and overtaken the narrative in telecoms like few other technologies in recent memory. And I say this as someone who has closely watched the market for more than 20 years.

From intelligent chatbots to co-pilots writing code to service assurance software that can fix problems before they affect service – AI is permeating every inch of CSPs’ network and business operations. In theory, at least.

Permit me a moment to put on my skeptical analyst hat.

For one, telcos are very large and very complicated enterprises, and tech “revolution” takes time. Five to ten years if you’re lucky. AI may well do better than that. But, to know if it’s on an accelerated path, we’ll need to see much less hype and many more CSPs saving – or better yet, making – significant money from AI.

I am all for letting machines do what they do best – repetitive tasks that bore humans, who are likely to make silly errors when tired. It would seem to make sense to let AI pore through mountains of data (without complaining) and find those connections between seemingly disparate bits of data and uncover previously unknown insights.

Despite that, I wonder if we sometimes forget about the people. Yes, the people who have reliably kept the lights on for a hundred years. The same people who calmly talked us through those minor but regular tech disasters, from a blacked-out computer screen to a series of mysteriously dropped phone calls.

There is something to be said for that human touch. The human factor. The one thing that AI cannot replicate.

But this is where my skeptical analyst hat comes off.

With GenAI, we can take those hundred years of knowledge that has been in all those human minds and make it available to everyone. We can take all those conversations and mine them for gold. We can make it easier for everyone to tap into the collective wisdom of the crowds for the benefit of the crowds.

This is why I’m so excited about Light Reading Network X Americas. I’ll get to bring my skeptical analyst hat to the keynote stage and talk about GenAI directly with the people tasked with making it happen.

And despite all evidence to the contrary right now, there is so much else other than AI happening in telco!

My fellow Omdia analysts will be bringing their own hats, and questions, and insights. They’ll be talking about fiber and mobile. And they’ll be covering the crucial angles, such as how to make money, and what changes in the tech landscape could mean for you, your company, and the industry at large.

I hope you’ll join us, and bring your own hats, and questions, and insights. As with AI, the more quality input, the more quality output.

Roz Roseboro will be speaking at Light Reading Network X Americas. Join us in Texas from May 21-23, 2024, and participate in the telecoms industry conversations surrounding the future of AI, and much more.