The arm twisting operators: Deterrent to mobile growth

This is a guest post by Tassavur Shaikh (Shaun) , the Editor of OnlyGizmos Network.

Companies are banking high on Mobile growth. Apple, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo.. almost all the IT giants that we know are today working hard to gain momentum in the booming mobile arena. Apple revolutionized the mobile Internet experience with iPhone, while Google’s Android is catching up fast. Old industry players like Nokia have shifted gears and are now actively working on the mobile apps / Internet side. Its clear that the way we compute would change significantly over the next few years. Smarter, smaller and powerful is the new mantra.

A large part of this mobile boom is the Internet coming to handhelds. Be it WiFi or evolving technologies over network (3G, 4G ?); everyone is trying to push the limits higher and higher. But mobile operators aren’t very happy with open smartphones that can actually render their subscription insignificant in the near future. The scare here is that the networks would be used as just data pipes for mobile Internet and everything would move to mobile Internet, this includes calls (VOIP). Resisting this change as much as they can, operators try hard to bundle their own apps or block apps that compete with their services. Not too long ago AT&T was blamed for pushing out Google Voice from the Apple App Store, however the blame went on Apple. And here we now have Verizon being blamed for Skype app doing a no show on the OVI store in US. It is also reported that UK operators are unhappy with the official Skype app coming via Nokia’s own app offering OVi.

In UK & US, the operators sell handsets bundled with subscription plans. For any mobile manufacturer to succeed, a killer carrier tie-up is necessary. Without the right network partner, no handset sells. This is where the operators come in by arm twisting the manufacturers and thus hampering proper growth potential of mobile Internet. Google made a bold attempt with the Nexus One to kill the carrier raj in US, but that was just a very small step towards a long route. It is argued that the only possible catalyst here can be the the government stepping in to regulate the market scenario. With that looking difficult, we really hope that rumors of Google buying out T-mobile to open up the market is true.

What do u think will be the next big change in the Mobile Market?

  • blinkky

    It’s hard to predict the future. The future is always changing =)

  • Chethan

    The future of Mobile Industry.. 4G 5G 6G 7G 8G and next 4H 6H 😛

  • Rohit Sane

    @Chetan: You you say may soon come into

  • hotzigetty

    carrier tied handsets in india? in the US people get scammed! over here there is some freedom at least!

  • José


    I believe that Intel may become an important player together with the manufacturers who will be using their technology.
    It seems to me that Nokia is one of them, but I’m not sure.


  • Niki

    Now in 2012 the mobile devices are spreading even more. Predictions were right. Evey big player wants a peace of the action (for example Microsoft bought Skype and made an agreement with Nokia, also Windows 8 is for tablets, also Google Chrome OS devices are out and so on).
    Not to mention that mobile search traffic is rising and now more and more websites make mobile versions which is increase the usefulness of having a mobile device.
    It is crazy :). I love my desktop PC and I wonder how long it will take for their kind to disappear.