BT partners with Google Cloud to boost digital transformation

(Image credit: EE)

BT will use Google Cloud’s technology to advance its digital transformation, creating a group-wide data and artificial intelligence (AI) platform and to power new services for its customers.

The five-year partnership with Google forms part of a wider shift at the UK’s largest telecommunications company, which set up a dedicated digital unit last year, tasked with creating innovative and data-driven products, platforms, and services.

BT will use a wide range of Google Cloud services, including infrastructure, machine learning (ML), analytics, security, and API management to power new products, reduce costs, lower risk and open new revenue streams.

BT Digital

The use of Google’s AI and ML technologies will allow BT to make better, more data driven decisions and to deliver personalised customer experiences. Greater visibility will also make it easier to manage networks and predict faults before they happen.

The partners intend for it to be a collaboration rather than a supply deal, with Google Cloud’s Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) working with BT Digital to create a culture of continuous delivery, automated operations, and accelerated development time.

All of these desirable outcomes comprise a wider cultural shift at the company, which describes it as ‘The Digital Way’. Digitisation is a priority for the telco industry as it seeks to expand the range of services it can offer customers, particularly businesses, and has seen growing convergence with the IT sector.

“Our partnership with Google is one of a series of strategic moves that BT Digital is taking to help accelerate BT’s growth and digital transformation,” said Harmeen Mehta, Chief Digital and Innovation Officer, BT. “This is a partnership that is deeper than just at the technology level. It will help Digital as a whole supercharge BT and drive its return to growth.”

“We’re proud to collaborate with one of the world's leading providers of communications services and play an integral part in its digital transformation journey,” added Thomas Kurian, Google Cloud CEEO. “By deploying our full cloud capabilities, and support from our SRE organisation, our goal in this partnership is to set up BT with the tools it needs for future growth and innovation.” 

Deployment has already started, with completion of the core migration of data set to be achieved by 2023.

Steve McCaskill is TechRadar Pro's resident mobile industry expert, covering all aspects of the UK and global news, from operators to service providers and everything in between. He is a former editor of Silicon UK and journalist with over a decade's experience in the technology industry, writing about technology, in particular, telecoms, mobile and sports tech, sports, video games and media.