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AT&T Uses Big Data to Improve Customer Experience

4/06/2014 by


The amount of data on AT&T Inc.T -0.61%’s network has grown 50,000% over the past 6 years. In response, AT&T is looking to new technology to help improve customer experiences, reduce costs and become more efficient.

AT&T has invested $140 billion in its wireless and wireline networks over the past six years, said Victor Nilson, vice president for Big Data at AT&T, speaking at the Hadoop Summit conference in San Jose Tuesday. The company collects 30 billion data points per hour in order to measure network quality that it feeds back into improving customer experience.

For example, when a cell tower fails, it can be difficult to figure out exactly how it is impacting customers because calls are often handed off to nearby towers. AT&T researchers created a tower-outage analyzer that gives the company an accurate, data-driven picture of the customer experience across the whole area impacted by an outage. The tool has been used to prioritize and escalate repairs to cell towers based on how it impacts customer experience. AT&T learned that some outages involving a significant number of towers had little customer impact, while others with fewer failed towers had a bigger impact.

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