May 18, 2012
Posted by on
As Google moves back into selling its smartphones direct to consumers, and companies like Voyager mobile garner headlines (and, apparently, DDoS attacks) it seems we’re slowly starting to realize that there’s another way to go mobile.
I’ve been getting a fair number of questions from the press in the past couple of weeks about whether we’re starting to change the way that US mobile owners are going mobile. In the US today, just under half of the total population has a smartphone today, and more than half of those owners are new to smartphones. GRowth will ultimately plateau but there are forces at work that may just accelerate growth in smartphone ownership if consumers would embrace them. The two forces at work involve a new model for buying hardware and a different way to think about service. Google – who tried unsuccessfully to use a direct model for its Nexus One handset in 2010 – is revisiting the direct-to-consumer business model. With the recent news of new MVNO Voyager Mobile, there’s increasing pressure on carriers’ traditional lines of business from pay-as-you-go services that give 24-month contract plans a serious run for their money. High-cost, low-rewward carrier agreements pushing users to lower-cost rivals.
Here’s what I had to say to Bill Siwicki of Internet Retailer, to whom credit goes to helping connect some dots, below is an expanded discussion on the topic. Read more of this post