Comment : Viviane Reding's reduced roaming rates highlight the need for managed wireless services

The European Union's plans to reduce the cost of roaming rates herald the start of a more transparent, cost-effective European telecoms market, and will benefit companies with an international wireless data network, according to Paul Smith, CEO of Comms company Wyless.

However, this is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the total cost of ownership (TCO) of wireless data networking, remaining competitive and building customer relationships.

Viviane Reding, EU Commissioner for Information Society and Media, plans to cap rates within the EU for voice calls, which will soon be followed by the compulsory reduction of SMS and data roaming rates. However, in terms of data, reducing roaming rates is just one small part of the TCO of wireless data connectivity and, despite market conditions driving down prices, companies should seek out alternatives to assess and manage their wireless data networks, including the total cost of sending data to and from mobile devices.

The use of global wireless networks is now commonplace across a multitude of industries. Sectors including retail, medical, asset monitoring and security, all utilise wireless machine-to-machine (M2M) technology reliant on global roaming. However, deploying and managing a global wireless network in-house is a costly, time consuming and administration-intensive process, and places incredible pressure on a company irrespective of size and revenue.

Outsourcing these activities is an ideal solution for companies, to ensure the global wireless data network is deployed and managed as quickly and effectively as possible. Partnering with a global wireless network provider reduces the TCO and results in more efficient solutions that would not be possible in-house with similar levels of investment.

In terms of logistics, a managed service offering reduces complexity by providing the client with just one single global data SIM for local, regional or global connectivity, one contract, one invoice and one point of contact for support, despite the number of countries and network reach. This in turn frees up administration time to allow a company to concentrate on its core business.

With data following voice down the commoditised route, companies of every size and type can benefit from a managed global wireless network provider.