February 24, 2012
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Getting Creative, Staying Ahead
In the past few months, we have taken you across the world, showing you pain points for mobile operators in the New Mobile World Order. Everybody across the entire industry is trying to adapt to the Second Generation Data Boom and whether looking back for solutions or looking forward, the shape of the industry is going to change greatly over the next year. The intelligent providers are looking at ways to improve their service and their efficiency from top to bottom, leaving no stone unturned. What the truly intelligent providers will do, what will set them up to emerge on top in this period of transition, is focus on diversifying their revenue by developing secondary revenue streams.
One place in particular mobile operators will be looking to develop more revenue is in the Over The Top (OTT) market, which is booming right now, while it also contributes greatly to the data demands operators are currently wresting with.
OTT’s surge has placed it in an curious relationship with mobile operators. Let’s take Facebook for example. Facebook apps provide an extremely popular service for smartphones and add greatly to the quality of the product providers support. However, the near-ubiquitous usage of these apps puts a nearly constant strain on networks, chewing up data. Facebook does nothing to offset the cost of supporting that data; it is entirely on the mobile operators to adapt. Some operators feel that they should be more fairly remunerated for the amount of their network Facebook occupies.
The relationship between mobile operators and OTT services will be interesting to follow in the coming months, as OTT figures to become an even larger part of smartphone functionality and attendant data demands. Operators should see their revenue model shift from something very heavy on top and bottom line analytics to one encompassing more of what their service provides. This is where they will have to get creative. Perhaps the relationship with OTTs will change, or perhaps operators will find new ways to work with OTT services--providing analytics or marketing.
Whatever ends up happening, this is the fun part, because like in any great shift in an industry, visionary innovation ends up coming out ahead. We are looking forward to being a part of what happens. If you want to be a part too, meet up with us at Mobile World Congress and join the conversation. Details of how to reach us can be found here.