Study: Embedded wireless market stalled on pricing concerns

BARCELONA, Spain--A study released this week by Accenture found that 63 percent of companies interested in the embedded wireless space say the biggest hurdle to success is finding the right business model for launching a solution. Survey participants said wireless operators need to tailor pricing plans to appeal to users with multiple devices.

Other challenges pinpointed by business users include interoperability and standards: 53 percent of corporations surveyed said standards choices (whether to embed HSPA or CDMA) were impeding their progress, and 52 percent said interoperability across networks was an obstacle.

Accenture and the GSMA also surveyed consumers about the embedded space. More than 80 percent said that networked devices will save them time and simplify their lives. However, consumers also said they preferred pricing plans that have a lower upfront payment and a higher monthly charge. They said they preferred dealing with a single supplier--via one monthly bill--for device management and customer service.

In an interview with FierceWireless, Miguel Myhrer, a senior executive with Accenture's Communications and High Tech Practice, said the study found that many consumers are ready to try connected laptops and ereaders. He added that netbooks likely will be the next big device to be added to the wireless ecosystem. Already, wireless carriers in the United States offer subsidized netbooks with mobile data service.

In fact, Accenture said consumer-oriented devices will lead the charge in embedded--but that certain verticals, such as healthcare and insurance, also hold a lot of promise because these areas likely will use the subsidized-device model, which the firm said is established and easy to understand.

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