New opportunities

Robin Ody, Senior Analyst at Canalys, recently spoke to Comms Business about how the channel can thrive in these challenging times.

CBM: How have channel partners adapted their connectivity offerings this year?

RO: “One of the hardest things for partners was to work out the logistics of how they maintain their day-to-day business. The other thing was within the technologies they sell – identifying where the opportunities were. That was really driven very much by customer demand at first, particularly around hardware and software sales. Services generally saw an overall decline just because they weren’t required or indeed able to be implemented.

“Today, the opportunities we see are around using Wifi, LAN and Bluetooth for things like contact tracing and proximity tracing in ‘hot zones’ that will emerge in education and healthcare environments. These can be used to actually see how people move throughout an environment and therefore provide better social distancing measures.”

CBM: What advice would you give to resellers for the coming months?

RO: “Generally speaking, the channel has been doing a pretty good job. The current market means that some partners are facing shortages of cashflow and demand from customers. Vendors have reacted quickly to offer new financing deals to spread risk and costs over multiple years. For the partners themselves, it’s about keeping up with what is available to you and trying to manage the difficult situation we’re in.

“That includes making sure you’re aware of all the dates and cut off points for things like furlough and back to work schemes. This is a significant amount of admin, but it can help you stay afloat to a certain extent.

“We have seen an increase in technical training certifications from partners looking to maintain and grow their skills base. For a lot of companies, budgets will fall but we expect that cybersecurity budgets will be maintained. If partners are looking at areas to increase technical skills, that’s definitely an area where customers continue to have a need because advanced persistent threats continue to grow, particularly now.”


This article was part of our ‘Road to Full Fibre’ supplement in September 2020.

Other articles from the supplement can be read on the links below:

A digital version of the full supplement can be accessed here.

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Charlotte Hathway

Charlotte is the editor of Comms Business and writes content that looks to inform and educate the Channel about the latest technology and business developments across the industry. Prior to her current role, she wrote for other MA Business titles New Electronics, Land Mobile and Critical Communications Today. Before moving into journalism, she spent five years working in public relations and has worked with various technology companies spanning telecommunications, cyber security and software development.

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