A decade or so ago I was involved in a consulting project with a large telco that wanted to “smart the dumb pipes” and add extra services to its regular phone and tolls packages.
The theory went, back then, that since regular tolls and phone line services were being disrupted by Voice over IP (VoIP) and other such technologies, that telcos would have to move fast to replace that lost revenue with something new. It seemed logical that, since this telco already sold a bunch of product to small and midsize businesses, that bundling a bunch of software products in with its regular services was a no-brainer.
So we sat down and drew lots of pretty pictures about just how it would work and how enabling it would be for this particular telco’s customers. And then . . . nothing much happened other than a splashy and expensive co-marketing campaign for one particular SaaS vendor.