Nokia: New Autonomous Customer Care Solution Offers Digital Care Breakthroughs, but are Interactive Bots Ready for Prime Time?

Ron Westfall – Research Director, Service Provider Infrastructure

Summary Bullets:

  • Nokia debuted its Nokia Autonomous Customer Care solution at its Nokia Analyst Day before the TM Forum Live! show, leveraging machine learning-powered interactive care bots to predict and resolve residential service concerns.
  • Nokia faces near-term support challenges as operators align their operations to take advantage of consumer intelligent assistants to improve customer care.

At the Nokia Analyst Day preceding the TM Forum Live! show, Nokia unveiled its Nokia Autonomous Customer Care solution, aimed at increasing the intelligence of operator digital care and creating new revenue streams. The solution offers interactive care bots, such as Apple Siri, Amazon Alexa, Microsoft Cortana, and Google Messenger, using natural language processing (NLP) and Nokia Bell Labs machine learning algorithms to predict and resolve service-degrading issues more efficiently. However, Nokia confronts near-term operator support challenges in scaling autonomous care.  

So what does the Nokia Autonomous Customer Care offering require to succeed long-term? A few things quickly come to mind:

  • Nokia needs to address ongoing concerns that consumer intelligent assistants, like Apple Siri and Amazon Alexa, are not ready for near-term mainstream adoption. The interactive bots continue to have issues quickly identifying user needs and require close-distance communications. As a result, Nokia must take care to avoid overhyping autonomous care capabilities as operators explore the challenges in using interactive bot technology and look to bypass early adoption setbacks.
  • Nokia needs to consider foregoing the “Zero Touch” label in its marketing of the Nokia Autonomous Customer Care software solution. Nokia Bell Labs reviewed the performance of the solution in a top-tier operator network with an outcome of up to 80 percent of care issues solved without using customer support agent intervention. This suggests the remaining 20 percent of issues required help desk support, negating the “zero touch” claims and leaving Nokia vulnerable to veracity challenges in its digital customer care marketing.
  • To enhance its digital care ecosystem influence, enlisting support for troubleshooting third-party devices, such as smartphones and tablets, in a non-disruptive manner is critical. Often network problems are difficult to separate from device issues, obliging Nokia to ensure the solution addresses the common device support needs of customers to further boost their overall satisfaction.
  • The launch focused on fixing residential fixed access problems like poor WiFi and DSL performance. Nokia needs to show the applicability of its solution in solving residential mobile service issues to prevent the uncertainty, fueled by competitor fear, uncertainty, doubt (FUD) tactics, that it comes up short on mobile support capabilities.
  • Nokia should also consider demonstrating the Nokia Autonomous Customer Care solution’s applicability to business and enterprise environments. Such a product development and marketing exercise expands the solution’s addressable market while also further confirming its agility in meeting operator digital care demands.

The Nokia Autonomous Customer Care solution offers breakthroughs in operator customer care practices, including dramatic reductions in residential service disruptions and customer care workloads. By enlisting high-profile consumer intelligent assistant brands like Apple, Amazon, Google, and Microsoft, Nokia instantly boosts the new solution’s market profile. Now Nokia must ensure the solution realistically aligns with the near-term capabilities of today’s interactive care bots to avoid operator adoption pitfalls, and further expand its use in residential mobile and enterprise settings.

 

About Ron Westfall
As the Research Director for Service Provider Infrastructure, Ron is responsible for tracking the evolution and key developments within the global service provider infrastructure and service enablement ecosystem markets, including back-office, infrastructure, regulatory, revenue management, and digital ecosystem issues.

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