Mobile Carriers Are Dumb Pipes
I just returned from a global 5-week business trip where I met with numerous carriers and their supplier base and sat through endless conference presentations. The resounding take-away is that mobile carriers are dumb pipes, especially in relation to their consumer operations. This was driven home on the last leg of my trip when I attended the Vodafone Industry Analyst Summit where it was clear that its consumer base was nothing but an exercise to buy scale in order to provide a platform to monetize other opportunities.
I also witnessed a panel with LinkedIn, YouTube, the BBC, and Twitter. Although all of these over-the-top services have contributed to the declining margins in the carrier space, the carrier community faces the fact that they cannot create a two-sided business model, restricting access and holding these companies’ content to ransom for revenue sharing. Too much disruptive competition exists in their own sp...
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