The global sales of policy management software rose 41% during 2011 to reach $589 million, with the majority of the investment coming from the mobile market. This is according to research house, Infonetics, who predict that the market will reach $1.9 billion by 2016.
Whilst the current boom is fuelled to a large extent by ‘push’ factors such as network congestion, the use of policy management is changing from a way of controlling customers’ usage to a way of enhancing customer experience while increasing revenues, and many of the implementations are an ‘add-on’ to investment inLTE infrastructure.
Infonetics sees imminent change in the market, which is currently led by Openet (followed by Huawei, Tekelec and Amdocs, via its Bridgewater acquisition). Mergers are certainly on the horizon and soon, according to the company.
Longer term, the uses for policy management will evolve in a number of areas. It will be used to guarantee quality of service – and quality of experience – for video streaming for instance, as well as being used in many M2M applications, for tracking, prioritizing and managing the millions of machine based connections.
Necessity is the mother of invention, so ‘they’ say and policy management and its potential is proving the point. Originally deployed as a way of controlling greedy bandwidth users, the negative press led marketing departments and IT to see policy management as a force for good and came up with a range of solutions that enhance the customer experience, while making the operation more efficient at the same time.