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Digital Transformation

Mobility at Verizon Wireless

You’ve all probably heard of Verizon.  Supporting 94 million customers presents quite a challenge. They are at IBM’s Impact conference talking about what they’ve done.  They had quite the crew ranging from the architects to the developers.

Verizon wireless manages their own development, their own network, and their own systems.  That gives Verizon unique access to a lot of data in the network.   In addition, the Verizon team works with Google, Apple, Microsoft, HTC, Samsung, and others.

Quote: 50% of time goes to ‘tradition IT, the other 50% goes to innovation.

Customer Site

Stats: 4.2 billion people will have a toothbrush. 4.6 billion will have a mobile subscription.

Do you build an app on the device or do you build a mobile web site.  If you want to exploit the capabilities of the client, then build a native app instead of the browser. Think of the gps, sensors, and other functionality available in the application itself.  If your needs are more simple, then a mobile browser based app will be sufficient.

Quote: huge challenge with the native applications.  Legacy application in Android is down to 3 months.  So many changes in 3 months.

Verizon uses one common framework on the back end. It’s meant to be device agnostic.   70% of the framework in an app is operating system agnostic.

Enterprise: Security is the MOST important thing when developing apps.

The lifecycle of a consumer app is 3.5 days.  Consumer is 3.5 days. Verizon puts in changes to their apps more than once a month.

Components in use at Verizon

  • Websphere datapower used for security and on the fly xml transformation
  • Websphere Message Broker
  • WebSphere Application Server
  • WebSphere MQ
  • Oracle DB
  • CA Siteminder
  • Multiple data centers use this same set of tools.

The middleware gives access to the sms api, the security api, the web api, etc.  They use WSRR for governance.  Tehere is so  much change and so  many apps in process that they need to govern it.

There are two key components that bring this all together. The client module which resides locally in the phone and the serve module.

DB does not use connection pooling. Too many inserts so they used C3PO connection pooling framework.  Now insert 2,500 messages per second.

Challenge for Verizon and any other mobile carrier

Verizon invested 100 billion dollars in data centers, stores, call centers, etc.  Apple invested <$100 billion and released the iphone to market. Overnight their revenue jumped.    Telecom stock price didn’t budge.  This is the era of partnership. You have to partner. Compete with IBM and partner. Compete with Apple and partner.  Compete like mad with Google and then partner on Android.

Verizon gave up control on the devices. At least they are preparing for it.  So how do you monetize? By giving up control of device, they are gaining access to the whole universe.  Access to customer data, customer loyalty, etc gives you leverage points to monetize based on this data.

Quote: Less presentation, more work.  Show me the results is what the Verizon CEO wants to see.

Tomorrow: miniaturization of computing power.  I blogged on this previously here.  That blog was before the latest set of processors were out.

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Michael Porter

Mike Porter leads the Strategic Advisors team for Perficient. He has more than 21 years of experience helping organizations with technology and digital transformation, specifically around solving business problems related to CRM and data.

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