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Telecoms opex: worldwide trends and forecast 2017–2026

24 August 2020 | Research

Caroline Gabriel

Forecast report | PPTX and PDF (25 slides); Excel | Operator Investment Strategies

"Operators’ operating costs remain stubbornly high, but automation will start to drive them down in the early 2020s."


This report provides forecasts for opex in the telecoms industry between 2017 and 2026. It provides a breakdown and analysis of trends by region, spending category and operator profile. It identifies the changes in operator behaviour, such as increased automation and asset sharing, that will have the greatest impact on spending levels in practice.

Key questions answered in this report

  • Are the capex/opex and revenue/opex ratios changing, and if so, why?
  • How will automation and virtualisation affect staff levels, productivity and overall costs?
  • Will a wider range of organisations be involved in running and funding telecoms networks in the 2020s through network and cloud sharing and hosting?
  • How are staffing/productivity/automation levels affecting cost and profit margins?
  • How will new-entrant operators influence the patterns of opex in the 2020s?


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