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Microservices are proving to be important catalysts as service providers worldwide enhance BSS/OSS platforms, leverage two-speed architecture approaches and progress through multiple digital transformation phases. A key benefit of BSS microservices is their ability to help service providers expand their legacy BSS capabilities, improve time-to-market and adopt digital business and service models. But that isn’t the only benefit of microservices. Here are five examples of BSS microservices functions that can help to enable DSP business strategies.
Cloud-based online charging enables a host of digital business models from in-app purchases to on-demand virtual networking. To aid this on-demand service consumption, real-time charging functions are essential. With cloud-based charging microservices, legacy BSS can be enhanced to enable real-time billing and authorization mechanisms without disrupting core revenue management processes.
Communications services are brought to market with complex sales processes. For example, sales processes for consumer mobile services require customers to piece together devices, accessories, rates plans and promotions just to walk out with a new phone. Pull these complexities into the SMB and enterprise domains, and the Configure, Price, Quote (CPQ) process is exponentially more complicated. Analytics-driven recommendation engines enable efficient customer experiences, shifting complex telecom sales into a simpler, automated digital mode.
Product management functions are often pulled into two separate directions; those which support rapid introduction of new services and service components, and those which fulfill a product catalog’s traditional roles. Product catalogs house data that’s critical to day-to-day business operations, but with transformation efforts, data is also being cleansed or migrated to new platforms. A product catalog microservice that’s pre-integrated with an existing catalog can drive rapid time-to-market for new services; protect the product catalog to sustain day-to-day operations; and make catalog data available to systems and processes via API.
Applications that charge against a micro-debit account are becoming increasingly common. Anything that involves paying for distinct consumables on-demand, like parking apps, can use microtransactions to debit charges against an eWallet balance. Using a microservice approach can add eWallet and debiting functionality to existing customer accounts, relieving revenue management platforms from the real-time complexities specific to eWallets. A microservice can also serve as a gateway to third-party debit accounts or charging functions, enabling a service provider’s customers to use existing debit and charge accounts to fund their microtransactions.
A microservice that enables an existing BSS platform to add an order, contract or transaction record to a public or private blockchain would allow a service provider to participate in blockchains without disrupting or re-architecting its BSS platforms or processes. Though a forward-looking concept, the need for it could arrive rapidly, making a microservice approach a sensible way for service providers to move into the blockchain era.
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