Gartner: Critical Capabilities for Wireline Telecom Services, US

In February, Gartner released their evaluation of network service providers in the United States. They put AT&T,  Verizon, XO Communications, Sprint, and many more under the microscope. As a network manager or sourcing professional – what should you be looking for and measuring against? Access critical benchmark and rating data in their ‘Critical Capabilities for Wireline Telecom Services, US‘ report.

The key differentiators between telecom products and services are becoming blurry. Half dozen of one, six of the other. What makes one carrier stand out today is their service availability and maintenance plans after the products and services have been installed and implemented.

From the Report

As WAN and voice services maturing, customer interest continues to shift from products and features to on-time service delivery, change management, quality of implementation and maintenance. Businesses are tailoring their acquisition criteria for wireline services based on specific use cases.

Buyers should weight criteria according to their own business, network road map, technology, application and operational requirements. Large enterprises, characterized by more than 50 domestic sites, will benefit from a multivendor NSP strategy to assure the highest level of WAN availability, coupled with the best competitive price and customer care.

Key Findings

Unit prices for Internet, Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS), and Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) trunk continue to decline 5% to 7% year over year.

Compared with simply renegotiating with incumbent providers, going to RFP saves enterprises 20% to 25%.

Public cloud connectivity options represent an emerging differentiator between the U.S. NSPs.


  • For their U.S. telecommunications service needs, large and midsize enterprises should request competitive bids from both Tier 1 and Tier 2 service providers.
  • Enterprises should avoid long-term, single-vendor lock-in by keeping minimum revenue commitments (annual or total contract value) at 70% or less of actual spend.
  • WAN connectivity to external cloud providers varies greatly by NSP; consequently, this is a key evaluation criterion.

Take a deep dive into each vendor’s scores and the overall criteria. See all of the data published in Gartner’s ‘Critical Capabilities for Wireline Telecom Services, US‘ report.