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Mobile communication industry image

Week 07, 2008

To increase its reach being the more than 3 billion current mobile phone users, everyone is trying to reach the large part of the world population that never (or almost never) makes phone call. The target is the other half of the world population.  The industry is adapting its offer for this huge market segment: most handset vendors are announcing low coast handsets, below US$ 100 (EUR 69) and even below US$ 50 (EUR 34.50).

At the same time, increasing the ARPU is on top of every decision maker's head in the industry. The industry is proposing a full set of innovation and developing trends: mobile TV, femtocells, mobile instant messaging, all-IP networks, WiMax, Ubiquitous mobile services, mobile transactions, 4G, LTE, etc…. All these trends develop, and analysts are far from agreeing on the actual reach of each of them.

To support both theses trends, the GSMA has launched a series of initiatives that aim at putting industry forces together, and also at giving a positive image of the mobile communication industry to the public. Among these initiatives:

  • "Bridging the digital divide" aims at making mobile communication available to everyone even in remote areas in developing countries. Mobile has a critical role to play in improving health, wealth, education and social mobility. GSMA promotes mobile communication development through a push for market deregulation.
  • "3G for all" proposes to bring 3G multimedia services and mobile Internet access to a mass-market user base around the world.
  • "Mobile Money Transfer" aims at enabling enable the world's 200 million international migrant workers to easily and securely send remittances to their dependents, many of whom don't have bank accounts.
  • "Mobile Alliance Against Child Sexual Abuse", which has just been announced by Craig Ehrlich, Chairman of the GSMA, will obstruct the use of the mobile environment by individuals or organizations wishing to consume or profit from child sexual abuse content.

All these initiatives will undoubtedly serve the two expansion goals of increasing the subscriber base and increasing the ARPU. But it remains to be demonstrated if they will really promote a positive image of the industry to the public.

Thierry Spanjaard
Chief Editor
Smart Insights