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The Smart Techie was renamed Siliconindia India Edition starting Feb 2012 to continue the nearly two decade track record of excellence of our US edition.

What American Mobile Telcos Can Learn from India

Arvind Rao
Friday, July 1, 2011
Arvind Rao
With the increased demand of mobile video, mobile music, data, and the convergence of these services with social media platforms, the mobile phone market is growing rapidly. However, while over-the top (OTT) players (which include OS vendors, handset makers and app developers) are benefiting from this growth, mobile telecom operators are struggling not to be relegated as bit pipe providers. The operators challenge is a) not to get squeezed by the OTT folks b) to drive topline growth.

One method for the mobile operators to meet this challenge is through connected apps that leverage the operator’s strengths and is offered to the consumer via a Value-Add Service (VAS). A connected application leverages dynamic data between applications and mobile devices significantly improving the end use experience.

VAS and Connected Apps

U.S. mobile operators can use a best of both worlds approach and partner with global VAS providers who can quickly and economically develop sophisticated services that leverage the operators’ unique advantages such as access to user’s location and presence.

Offered by mobile operators, VAS is a very successful business model in India and throughout the world. With VAS, third parties partner with the operators to provide services that can take advantage of their network and their relationship with the customer. The operator has a major role to play in VAS as it performs customer facing services such as billing relationship, customer care, etc. The developers have the expertise and the focus to develop content and apps that engage the consumer. Additionally, the developers are leaner than the operator which allows them to move quickly to meet user demand. This allows the operator to roll out services fast and profit from them.

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