Ericsson strikes API pact with Deutsche Telekom

Ericsson and Deutsche Telekom (DT) are collaborating on a commercial partnership to offer communication and network APIs to developers and enterprises.

APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) basically allow third-party applications to make use of 5G networks. They’re a key component of Ericsson’s enterprise strategy and promise to boost revenues for mobile operators eager to get a return on 5G.

Specifically, DT commercially launched network APIs under the brand “MagentaBusiness API.” Developers and business customers can now build apps and services that communicate with Deutsche Telekom’s network in Germany. Ericsson’s Vonage business is providing the platform for the service.

DT is launching MagentaBusiness API as a “friendly adopter program,” initially composed of three services: quality-on-demand, device status/roaming and device location.

Quality-on-demand allows an application to request a certain quality of service for a SIM card. Device status/roaming will be used to determine whether or not a device is in international roaming mode and in which country. Device location is where the network can verify the location of a SIM card within the mobile network in Germany, independent of GPS availability.

In Barcelona earlier this year, the GSMA announced an industry-wide initiative called GSMA Open Gateway, where APIs are defined, developed and published in CAMARA, the open source project driven by the Linux Foundation in collaboration with the GSMA. DT is a founding member of the CAMARA Alliance.

For its part, Ericsson estimates vastly higher revenue opportunities for operators to be realized through new use-cases based on network APIs.  

During Ericsson’s Q2 2023 earnings call, CEO and President Börje Ekholm talked about the excitement in the industry around network APIs and Vonage’s role in shaping the industry landscape.

“We are continuing to have dialog with leading operators on how to establish the network API market,” he said, adding that Ericsson believes that network APIs, which will be deployed using a communications platform as a service (CPaaS) model, will play a key role in how 5G network resources will be consumed and paid for by end users.