Friday, April 6, 2007
Mobile is Where Innovation Will Happen
...for very simple reasons...VoIP doesn't change the user experience very much on a landline phone. Some people think that is an advantage. On a mobile handset, VoIP is but one element of many many things that can be tweaked and customized in ways the enrich the communications experience. That's in large part because, to an ever-greater degree, mobile handsets are general purpose computing devices, with all that implies for differentiated services and features.
Mobility itself arguably is the single biggest change in voice communications over the last 30 years. But smartphones will provide the platform for the next waves of development, simply because the smart phone is the most-used intelligent edge device, and is deeply embedded into a typical user's life.
In fact, 75 percent of people questioned in a survey by Yahoo! HotJobs said they used their wireless devices equally for work and personal reasons. Nearly 30 percent were so attached to them they only switched them off while sleeping. The online survey of 900 professionals revealed that 81 percent stay connected with a mobile phone, 65 percent use a laptop to keep in touch and 19 percent have adopted smart phones, cell phones with computer-like functions.
Like a network upgrade from mechanical to eletronic switches, or analog to digital, or digital to soft switch, VoIP mostly changes what happens in the core of the network. Analog terminal adapters and network interface units change what happens at the network edge.
Mobile handsets change what happens at the user interface level. And most of the advantages fixed mobile convergence represents will occur as mobile features become usable on the wireless tail of a wireline transport mechanism.
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