Mobile operators move towards open ecosystems

A new report from Capgemini argues that closed ecosystems in the mobile industry are to become a thing of the past.

The report examines the disruptive potential of an open mobile ecosystem and how new initiatives are providing options for consumers. Consumers' demand for seamless access to their favourite online services is forcing mobile operators to open their networks to external applications and devices.

The report says operators have three alternatives:

"¢  embrace open network access, where the operator becomes an application-agnostic service provider, extending its network to all third party 'over the top' services;

"¢ differentiated network access, whereby operators create distinct service pipes priced at different levels;

"¢ telco as a platform, where operators let third parties build services around core network features such as voice and presence.

Capgemini concludes that the third option offers "maximum revenue uplift": it estimates that a UK mobile operator with a 20% market share could see revenue growth of 12% by 2011 by adopting the platform strategy.