TeliaSonera: “CDN players that haven’t spent enough on innovation are struggling”

John Hakansson, head of Content Delivery Networks at TeliaSonera

John Hakansson, head of Content Delivery Networks at TeliaSonera

John Hakansson, head of Content Delivery Networks at Swedish telco TeliaSonera, on the disruption still to come for the broadcast industry, the biggest technical innovations he sees for the CDN space, and who telcos should be partnering with to mitigate the OTT threat.

John will be speaking at the CDN World Summit event taking place in London on 1-3 October. For more information and to register, please visit

The internet has clearly disrupted the broadcast industry massively over the past few years. Why do you think that is?

I believe much of the disruption started when Youtube came to Internet together with many other online video services. Since then it looks like we’re moving to a world where video apps may replace TV channels.

I think the biggest disruption is still to come. On top of that, the Internet has a strong value proposition giving the customer what they want over any screen and on the move.

Are the biggest changes now behind us?

No definitely not, so far everything has been pretty predictable. The real changes will come in a couple of years when the real technical challenges will be tangible and user behaviour towards over-the-top delivery accelerates.

What do you think are the biggest technical innovations in the CDN space at present?

It looks like it is more innovation around scale then features these days, since the traffic volumes are increasing so fast.

I think that there is a lot of innovation due to the fact that everything has to be automated and at the same time available for thousands of customers running their entire business on the CDN platforms.

CDN players that haven’t spent enough time and money on innovation during the last years are struggling today.

Who do you believe telcos should be looking to partner with to mitigate the OTT threat?

It’s all about smart partnering and finding good healthy partnerships. I believe it’s more about creating value then cost savings, and options to achieve that are rare as it seems.

You will never add value to an OTT service for consumers if you as a telco are focused on something other then adding value.

Consumer services like Netflix and Spotify are focused on increasing quality and decreasing friction (ease of use), that doesn’t match well with a telco’s cost savings approach. Why not do business together instead?

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