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Vodafone sees future in service, application aggregation

27 февраля 2008

Microsoft, LogicaCMG call for collaboration to respond quickly to latest Web trends, as industry cannot predict 'new Facebook'.

Vodafone sees future in service, application aggregationVodafone Tuesday said in order to avoid becoming bit pipe providers, operators should look to offer their customers the broadest scope of services and applications from a wide range of sources.

"It's not a case of being either a bit pipe carrier or a service provider, we believe there's massive space in between," said Ian Shepherd, consumer director for Vodafone

Speaking at a round table event in
London, he said there is a viable business case for creating environments that provide consumers with the best selection of applications and services, whether they are embedded on the handset or accessible on the Web, or made by third party software developers or the operators themselves.

"The range of things you can do on a mobile phone is vastly greater than what anyone actually is doing on their mobile phone.
Educating customers about what's out there is an important role that network operators can play," added Shepherd.

Meanwhile, according to Microsoft, telecoms operators need to build on and leverage the relationships they have with their customers and become tools of service and content discovery.

"Right now my operator has a bit of demographic information about me, but if my carrier really knew who I was, it could be my new recommendation engine and then sell me those applications because right now I'm paying too many different people for too many different things and it's confusing," said Michael Weening, director of Microsoft UK's communications sector.

However, device maker HTC said it doesn't mean that carriers should bombard their customers with information.

"These applications must not be seen as intrusive. It shouldn't be too rigid in the consumer's face, we need to allow them to embrace these new services," said Florian Seiche, European VP of sales and marketing, HTC.

Furthermore LogicaCMG said that in order to be able to offer these kinds of services, the industry needs to work with open standards and collaborate on common platforms.

"Consumers move on – we're already seeing the decline in Facebook – but they will move onto the next collaborative environment and successful operators will be the ones that make it easier to churn, not between operators, but between applications, so users can move to the next fashion and take all their data with them," said David King, CTO of LogicaCMG.

He suggested this would also mean that operators would not have to go back to building in support for new applications every time a new one came along, and instead could adapt quickly to new trends.

Speed is also a prime concern for Microsoft.

"We still don't know what the killer app will be, or even if there is one, but in order to respond quickly enough we need to be ready for everything," said Weening.

He also said that in the case of the Internet, what is considered a killer app at one moment has the potential to change quickly and unexpectedly.

"I've read as many articles about the death of Facebook in the last two months as I have about the success of Facebook," said Weening.

"We have to learn to be a lot more agile than we have in the past because we can't predict what the next Facebook is," he said.

Источник: Total Telecom

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