Elitecore Technologies, a billing and revenue management firm based in Ahmedabad, India, is all set to form a specialized unit that will help WiFi operators to generate revenues through advertising.
“We are starting a new unit in our company which will help in the monetization of WiFi,” says Akshat Joshi, Elitecore Technologies Ltd. ‘s vice president of WiFi product management. “Through this unit, we would not only set up the platform but also [handle] liaison with the advertising agencies.”
The use of big data and analytics can clearly help advertisers to reach relevant customers more easily. Yet Elitecore’s move seems likely to represent the first time that a BSS company will also be liaising with advertising firms. Although revenue management firms typically help operators to make use of big data so they can tailor their promotions, they have shied away from dealing with the advertising firms directly.
Elitecore has already started working on this initiative and ultimately hopes to have between 20 and 30 employees working part- or full-time on it. The new unit is to use data generated by Elitecore’s existing products to offer contextual and location-based advertising to end customers.
Elitecore believes it is in a strong position to help operators generate revenues from their WiFi networks thanks to the existing relationships it has with most of India’s service providers. Indeed, according to Joshi, the company’s WiFi Service Management Platform (SMP) — which provides authentication, billing, captive portal and location-aware services — is already deployed in most Indian operators’ networks.
Although WiFi deployment is in its early stages in India — as operators look to the technology to relieve congestion on cellular networks — rollouts are likely to gather pace in coming months as mobile data traffic soars with the launch of 4G services.
Predictably enough, WiFi is now an integral part of most operators’ network strategies. But several players are looking to the technology for more than just an offloading solution. Tata Teleservices Ltd. is now experimenting with location-based services in an effort to monetize its WiFi network. Government initiatives like Digital India and Smart City should also provide a spur to the technology. (See Tata Teleservices on Hunt for WiFi Partners , RJio to Drive WiFi Rollout in India and Ozone Plans Ubiquitous WiFi in India.)
All of this bodes well for Elitecore. “We are in a strategic position since we are already working with most of these telcos,” says Joshi. “Besides India we have received an encouraging response from other regions like the Middle East and Latin America.”