Telefónica Germany NEXT GmbH’s areas of expertise:
Data and interconnection - opportunities for Telefónica NEXT
On a visit to Charlottenstrasse in Berlin-Kreuzberg, boxes are being unpacked and signs affixed to the lift. The start-ups of the area have got a new neighbour: Telefónica NEXT. Its staff analyse anonymised data in order to develop solutions for cities, retail and many other areas. They make everyday objects smarter with software and data analysis, engaging with Berlin’s ecosystem of entrepreneurs, think tanks and politicians. Here, the telecommunications firm Telefónica Deutschland’s new company will shape the future of the digital world.
We are experiencing the greatest technological revolution of the last 200 years. Around the world, more data is now produced in five days than was produced in the previous 2,000 years of human history. By 2019, various studies predict that there will be four times as many networked devices as there are people in the world.
In Germany, Telefónica Deutschland wants to play a leading role in this digital world. Data analysis is an important part of this, as are smart devices and objects for end customers. The German market is still in an early stage of development in both cases. This is Telefónica NEXT’s chance to grow. However, the digital fields of the future need one thing above all: air to breathe and room to develop. This is why Telefónica Deutschland has chosen to found the new company as a start-up within the group of companies. Thanks to its independence, Telefónica NEXT can rapidly develop new products and test them on the market.
The wealth of data and its rewards
As Germany’s largest mobile service provider, Telefónica Deutschland’s normal business processes give it access to a large amount of data. This is an important raw material of digitalisation. Linked intelligently, the data provides important insights that are relevant to companies from a wide range of industries as well as to municipalities, public transportation services and society as a whole. Telefónica NEXT is taking the opportunities of smart data analysis in the Advanced Data Analytics unit and can already boast its first products and solutions.
Data analysis for traffic and retail
Anonymised movement data and demographic data can be analysed with a specially developed process. This can be of interest to cities that urgently require solutions to increasing traffic. The potential of mobile telecommunications data as a reliable source of data for traffic planning is currently being investigated in Stuttgart together with Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation IAO. In addition, a pilot project in Nuremberg analyses traffic flows and thereby air pollution on the basis of mobile data. The first results will be available at the end of the year. Bricks-and-mortar retail and its customers can also benefit from smart data analysis and thus strengthen the economic clout of city centres. The analysis of movement flows, for example, allows retailers to better align their product range, prices, opening times, or window displays to their target groups. In addition, Telefónica NEXT is working on solutions for digital in-store shopping experiences, where data analysis and the Internet of Things go hand in hand.
Internet of Things for end consumers
The first phase of the digital transformation via the Internet of Things (IoT) was primarily about optimising business processes. Devices, machines and vehicles were networked and now communicate automatically with each other. The next phase will be about bringing digital applications to market maturity for consumers, for whom the Internet of Things is giving rise to numerous interesting potential applications, such as smart tracking services, smart skiers, or digital price labels. All of these networked devices must be developed and controlled. Telefónica NEXT has created geeny.io, a software-as-a-service platform that enables other companies to offer networked solutions for its end users. Development is quick and cost-efficient, as geeny.io provides ready-made service components such as intelligent GPS algorithms. Once programmed, IoT solutions can be used again and again for different products. Manufacturers of smart products for end customers can sell new products thanks to geeny.io and thus tap into new target groups. In addition, they are given an almost real-time insight into the use of their products, which was not possible before. With geeny.io, Telefónica NEXT is helping these B2C companies enter the age of the Internet of Things.
Business model founded on data protection
Social acceptance and trust are the foundation of every successful business model that focuses on the exchange of data. Therefore, the development of new data protection products and services plays an important role. Telefónica NEXT is making sure that customers and users retain control over their data at all times. Telefónica Deutschland was one of the first companies in Germany to develop an anonymisation method, with which large quantities of data are completely anonymised via a three-step process. The procedure was monitored by the federal Data Protection Commissioner and certified by TÜV. Regardless of the complete anonymisation, customers who object to the use of their anonymised data can opt out at any time.