Sunday, 21 November 2010

Wrote an article for Gigaom on Apple and SIMs

Gigaom just published an article by me called: "How to bypass carriers Apple style", on what Apple could do with the SIM-idea I developed for M2M. Apple is only in there because of the marketing value, Samsung, Sony, Philips, LG, Asus, all of them could be doing this. It works best for laptops and other data devices. These devices often don't have data roaming enabled, even if you use a dongle.

Have fun reading it!

GIGAOM Readers: please have a look at some of the other articles I wrote on the topic:

Other things I wrote:


  1. As a lifelong and career tech, I found the article on GigaOM fascinating. But...

    It sure sounds like a fantasy, to ever believe the carriers would agree to this. And, I hardly want to give any more control to Apple! The consumer cost saved by making the major pipes compete for my traffic, would just be added back to my bill by/from Apple. I loathe the pipe owners too, but Jobs/Apple are hardly any more altruistic or fair in their pricing. Apple has shown they'll lie, bully, gouge, and screw us over at every opportunity, too!

    Apple is just one handset manufacturer; in order to compete with Apple, then SonyEricsson, HTC, RIM, Samsung, et al, would need to arrange the same, which is not trivial.

    The "bridge owners" (the cell carriers) are not likely to ever cede even a crumb of control to any handset supplier.

    Has anything like this actually been done, anywhere else? Given that our (U.S) elected officials recently ruled that corporations have "free speech" rights to endorse and fund political candidates, the same as real people, I can't imagine that even in the rarest of circumstance, how this could ever come to pass.

    The support required from our gov't, is now (more than ever) focused mostly on the biggest cash contributors. Our gov't works for Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint, NOT for The People, with their Apple products.

  2. Many of the questions (apart from the general Apple bashing) focus on why Telco's should allow this. For one thing, because they already do today. At any given moment several hundred companies have such a deal with a telco. It's called roaming. Bhutan Telecom can get access for its customers. All I'm proposing is that a smart metering company or a consumer electronics company can have similar access to the network.

    I would even go as far as saying that if companies do not get this access, there is an anti-trust issue going on. Why would Bhutan Telecom be allowed access and not Apple? MVNO's are no different than roaming access companies.

    I am naive enough to believe than in many places in the world the vision I have can be delivered by competition between market operators. There is room for competition and there are many innovations on the horizon. Being able to access 3G networks without a subscription on a consumer device is currently more or less unheard off. The model presented here could deliver that and with that a new revenue stream for mobile operators. Though the big 10 mobile operators of the world, may be against it, there are 800 operators in the world, some of which may not object to making money at the expense of their competitors.

    Furthermore regulators should push this as they are getting a more competitive market back. There will not just be 3 or 4 carriers per market where people can sign up to. It will be a much more vibrant market through the various types of MVNO's that will develop. Some handset makers may want to create a huge vertical and take control of everything, Apple comes to mind. Others may just use this to give their customers the greatest freedom possible, thereby creating a mobile hippy heaven. The Google Android-types with sandals come to mind here.

    Why use your own SIMs and not just OTA updates? Well, it's much the same as the difference between using a your own car and using a taxi. Over the air updates only work in a small scale, with all the basics still determined by the carrier. Having your own SIM would mean full freedom. the MVNO doesn't own the road, but it can determine how it wants to get from A to B.


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