Archives: Opinion

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, telecoms.com’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.

An end to iPhone exclusivity

The most interesting thing about Vodafone’s announcement this week that it has struck a deal to sell the Apple iPhone, is that it signifies an end to the exclusivity deals Apple has been so fond of.

One in the eye for net neutrality?

Virgin Media’s decision to become the first ISP to partner with the BBC and launch iPlayer on its own platform this week came as something of a surprise, given the kicking the controversial media player has got in the ISP community recently.

Apples are not the only fruit

Although sales of Apple’s iPhone did not exceed 5.5 million units until 1Q08, its launch clearly changed the dynamics of the smartphone market, raising the bar for user experience by delivering a range of desirable, easy-to-use features

More doom and gloom atop Mt. Moto

Troubled vendor Motorola delivered more pain to its shareholders, with the company increasing its net loss for the first quarter to $194m from $181m in the same period a year ago. Sales also dropped from $9.4bn in 2007 to $7.4bn in the three months to the end of March.

Behind the mask

At the beginning of the millennium, with the fanfare from the 1999 launch of Virgin Mobile UK still ringing in the industry’s ears, it was widely anticipated that an MVNO stampede was imminent in the world’s leading mobile markets. A swathe of consumer-facing organisations, from soft drinks manufacturers and fashion labels to banks and football clubs, were expected to establish some variation on the reseller relationship with network operators, bringing every conceivable brand proposition to a population hungry for mobile services.

WiMAX heating up in Asia

Attending and chairing the WiMAX Forum Congress Asia recently in Singapore provided an opportunity to take the pulse of the WiMAX industry in Asia Pacific.

Copyright debate walks the plank

Content owners ought to collaborate with ISPs.

Content owners’ efforts to get ISPs to disconnect customers suspected of engaging in illegal filesharing activities took a knock last week when the European Parliament voted in favor of stopping European Union legislatures from enacting laws that would ask service providers to do just that.

M-money is an idea whose time has come

In the first of a flurry of recent mobile-money-service announcements, Vodafone said last week that it would launch its M-Pesa mobile-money-transfer service in Tanzania later this month in partnership with Vodacom. Tanzania’s No. 4 operator, Zantel, responded by saying it would introduce its own mobile-money-transfer service, beating the launch of M-Pesa. Then the UAE’s Etisalat, which has a majority stake in Zantel, said it was developing an international money-transfer service with Indian operator Idea Cellular, HSBC India and Mashreq Bank.

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