Friday, July 30, 2010

Smartphones on a tear

The Q2 2010 numbers are in, and people love smartphones! According to Strategy Analytics, and covered in a piece on RCR Wireless, smartphone shipments jumped 43% year over year. More impressive is that 60m units were shipped in Q2. That works out to nearly 20% of the total number of handset units sold worldwide. Very impressive.

As a result of a recent smartphone survey sponsored by Kineto Wireless, we know that over 80% of all smartphones have Wi-Fi. The next step must be Smart Wi-Fi.

MobiTV App Prohibited From Working over Wi-Fi

For mobile operators, there is an ugly truth about basic Wi-Fi offload that no one wants to talk about: the packet services you can collect revenue for can not be offload to IP, or worse yet, aren’t even accessible when Wi-Fi is on.

MobileCrunch writer Devin Coldewey covered the story of trying to run AT&T’s MobiTV service on his Android phone.

AT&T supports ‘basic’ Wi-Fi offload, which means the Wi-Fi radio dumps web traffic directly to IP, but must maintain a 3G connection for any operator hosted service.

But the problem with basic Wi-Fi offload is that revenue generating packet services, like MobiTV, can’t be offloaded to Wi-Fi because there’s no secure connection from the mobile core network to the smartphone. Whoops.

Smart Wi-Fi addresses this specific problem. Smart Wi-Fi creates that secure connection between the handset and the mobile core network so paid packet services like MobiTV (and visual voice mail, and MMS, etc…) can be delivered to the subscriber over Wi-Fi.

Throw in 3G data caps, and Smart Wi-Fi is better than sliced bread.

The operator wins two ways: first, they can continue to sell data services that actually make money, rather than simply transporting non-revenue generating YouTube traffic. Second, they can offload those valuable data services to Wi-Fi.

The subscriber wins two ways as well. First, they get access to the service over lightening fast Wi-Fi. Second, by using Wi-Fi they avoid the tiered data cap.

Wow, Smart Wi-Fi looks like it’s a win-win-win-win situation.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Give us our Wi-Fi! US & UK Survey Reveals Consumer Demand for Wi-Fi Services

Seventy eight percent of people in the United States and 74 percent of people in the United Kingdom who own smartphones with Wi-Fi capabilities would be interested in an application that would use Wi-Fi to deliver 'five bars' of coverage at home or in the office.

Eighty eight percent of these people in the US, and 80 percent of people in the UK would also be interested in a service from their mobile operator that would give discounted calling when the phone was connected to Wi-Fi.

It's interesting to see how similar the US and UK numbers are. These numbers are the results of two online surveys conducted in Q2 2010. The surveys were completely independent of each other and were conducted by two different companies. Yet, the level of interest in more Wi-Fi-based services is high across both geographies.

The US survey was done by MarketTools Zoomerang of 330 US smartphone owners. The UK YouGov online omnibus survey focused on the 23% of nearly 2,200 respondents in the United Kingdom with smartphones.

I encourage you to read the full survey overviews for more data and graphics available at

More highlights:

In the US -

  • 43 percent of people who own smartphones with Wi-Fi capabilities use the Wi-Fi every day.
  • 45 percent of those people use Wi-Fi because it provides easy access to the Internet, and 43 percent use it because it is faster than the cellular network.
In the UK -
  • 50 percent of people who own smartphones with Wi-Fi capabilities use the Wi-Fi every day;
  • 40 percent say they use the Wi-Fi because it is faster for accessing the internet; 50 percent say because it is easier.

Smartphone users are embracing Wi-Fi and seem to want to be able to use it more. There's an opportunity for mobile operators to tap into this tremendous interest and encourage Wi-Fi usage to increase network offload, improve network coverage/performance and gain increasing benefits by offloading traffic to the fixed network.

Read all the rest at And there's plenty more. Then, tell us what you think in the comments.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Telefonica launches mobile VoIP

About 9 months ago, Telefonica purchased VoIP service provider Jajah for $207m. Today, it was announced that Telefonica is rolling out a new service called 'O2 Gloabl Friends' based on the Jajah technology.

Certainly we're glad to see mobile operators taking the VoIP threat seriously. Telefonica, with large operations in Europe and South America, may have been feeling the heat of Skype, now the largest service provider of international voice traffic.

For other service providers, there is an easier way than buying a VoIP provider. Based on the 3GPP GAN specification, it's possible to turn existing voice services into VoIP services.

No new VoIP gear, no new VoIP systems, it's all based on the existing voice network already installed. GAN turns the internet into a generic access network for all your mobile services, including voice. Products exist today!