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What Is Big Data and Why It’s Important?

Autor:   •  March 4, 2015  •  Case Study  •  2,937 Words (12 Pages)  •  728 Views

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What is Big Data and Why It’s Important?

When data cannot be obtained or analyzed by traditional technologies and tools in a timely manner because of its size, complex nature and the rate of growth we refer to such data as “big data”.  The above mentioned three characteristics are usually referred to as the 3Vs: volume, variety and velocity.  In the telecommunications industry, vast amounts of data can be made available to the companies providing services. “Big data offers telecom operators a real opportunity to gain a much more complete picture of their operations and their customers, to further their innovation efforts” (PWC).  

Simply collecting data is not enough, it must be maintained and organized in an efficient matter.  This ensures accuracy, timeliness and verifiability.  Large amounts of data must be processed and analyzed in a timely manner as it can run the risk of becoming obsolete over time, especially with respect to real-time or near-time data (FT).  Accuracy and verifiability of the information is equality important.  Error-ridden data can be detrimental to an organization trying to incorporate data analysis techniques into their workflows.  For example, inaccurate or incomplete CRM data often hampers sales and marketing performance.  For larger companies, standardized data should be also be at the forefront when maintaining and organizing big data.  This allows data to be found quickly and efficiently as well as helps organizations to meet legal and regulatory requirements for retrieving specific information within a set timeframe (FT).  

Storing and maintaining Big Data is crucial for its effectiveness, however without the ability to process and analyze the stored data, a majority of it will lack relevance to major decision makers, such as C-level executives.  Companies must implement Business Intelligence solutions to pull information from data centers and present them in a way that makes sense to the users that are viewing it.  In doing so, a company can benefit immensely.  Decisions based of real data can lead to reduced costs, increased profits and greater company efficiency.  Today, the telecommunication industry is not fully reaching into Big Data and its potential to offer an interactive experience to its users, this may be due to privacy laws and growing public concern over their own personal data. Effective collecting, organization and maintenance techniques coupled with the necessary Business Intelligence analytic tools can present telecommunications with a significant amount of relevant information which can be leveraged creating successful decision making processes.   An ideal solution would have to abide by current laws as well as ease the public’s weariness on personal data storage and use.

Bell Canada and Big Data

Bell Canada is one of the largest telecommunications providers in Canada.  An asset of a much larger conglomerate, BCE Inc., which also owns Bell, Bell Mobility and a stake in Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment.  Bell Canada is a provider of landline and mobile telephone service, internet/broadband services, digital television, print and radio broadcasting (FT).  Through its several subsidiaries and large reach into services offered to the public, Bell has the ability to collect massive amounts of data from subscribers.  Over the past year, Bell has begun to expand their data collection methods, focusing on the following types of data from subscribers: Internet browsing history and search terms from PC & mobile, TV viewing history, Phone call patterns (land line and mobile), GPS Location and Location Web Services and Cell Phone App/Feature use (FT).  We notice that Bell reaches into several services to collect data to provide them with the best picture of their users.  On top of what was mentioned above, Bell also collects subscriber demographics, including but not limited to: age, sex and gender. Correlating data with subscriber demographics allows for Bell to create specific promotions and targeted advertising to provide to its user base (FT).


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