Archives: Opinion

PCCW arrives too late at the M&A table

PCCW Chairman Richard Li must have been out of the business pages for at least six months, so it was only a matter of time before he came back to dominate the headlines once again.

Xohm WiMAX to go live in September

Now we know. After weeks of speculation as to when Xohm, the WiMAX business unit of Sprint Nextel, would launch commercial services, Barry West, Sprint Nextel CTO and president of Xohm, finally named the month (if not the day).

Consumers don’t trust mobile payment

Research from security specialist Unisys suggests that consumers remain wary of using their mobile phones as payment mechanisms, driven by concerns over security. Of more than 13,000 mobile subscribers from 14 countries surveyed in March, 71 per cent said that they would not consider using a mobile device to bank or shop online.

UK ISPs should swallow their pride and start being honest about broadband

At a recent industry event, a number of executives trotted out the latest variation on that old maxim of the telecoms industry: “Customers don’t really care about technical details; they just care about what technology can do.” In this instance, it was applied to broadband speeds: “Customers don’t really care that our network can’t deliver 8Mbps speeds, they just care that it allows them to access YouTube, Facebook, etc.”

Nokia Siemens Networks: 14 months on

One year into its operation as a merged entity, monster vendor Nokia Siemens Networks is still facing a challenging market. Competition is strong and the growth outlook is not good, as chief executive Simon Beresford-Wylie readily admits the carrier was caught on the back foot. “In 2006, at the time of the merger, the market looked like it was growing. But this wasn’t the case,” he says.

Mobile ads ‘ten times more effective’

Mobile advertising is almost ten times more effective on young consumers than other forms of advertising, according to research released by mobile ad firm JumpTap.

Semantics of openness teeming with contradictions

The meaning of “open” is in the eye of the beholder. Clearly the mobile communications industry is opening up to new ideas, business models, device concepts and the like, but is it becoming truly open? With so many competing commercial interests, not to mention legal and regulatory issues, efforts to really change the business face numerous hurdles.

The times they are a’changin’

The world’s biggest handset vendor, Nokia, and two outsiders, RIM (BlackBerry) and Apple, stand to gain most by pioneering fresh revenue streams for the mobile handset industry with their emerging push into value added services such as navigation, email and music.

Emerging markets: The balance of power

With subscriber growth increasingly restricted to emerging markets with a huge collective population, the operators able to achieve success in these regions will find themselves among the most powerful in the world. And then they’ll want to go global.

Enterprise services: It’s business time

The scale and complexity of enterprise services is mind-boggling. Operators find themselves targeting a vast range of organisations, everything from a ‘man with a van’ removals business right up to blue chip multinational conglomerates with installed employee user bases of tens of thousands and communications budgets of tens – sometimes hundreds – of millions of dollars. There is no such thing as one size fits all and so segmentation plays a vital role.

Cast adrift

For the past few years,’s sister publication MCI has done an annual feature on mobile navigation and Location Based Services (LBS), and despite all the hype, in 2008 we’re still waiting for them to find their way to market.

Recent WiMAX events should put incumbents on guard

A large ecosystem and economies of scale alone create and sustain successful mass-market technologies. The heavy-hitters in the US technology and media industries that recently rallied behind WiMAX will be hoping they have done enough to ensure that they are on the winning side of this adage. And in Europe, Intel’s winning of a license to offer WiMAX services at 2.6GHz in Sweden, along with upcoming 2.6GHz auctions across Europe this year, should make incumbent mobile operators alert to the potential threat from new business models.

New Clearwire a boost for WiMAX but faces challenges

The new WiMAX venture between Sprint Nextel, Clearwire and other players-including Intel, Google and three major cable operators-is big news for both WiMAX and the broader mobile broadband industry.

Plusnet offers insight into iPlayer data

The debate over who should foot the bill for ever-increasing video traffic on broadband networks rages on – now behind closed doors rather than in the press I might add – but content owners and internet service providers appear unlikely to reach a solution soon.

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Should privacy be treated as a right to protect stringently, or a commodity for users to trade for benefits?

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