T-Mobile CEO calls for simpler devices to drive mobile Internet revenues

Speaking to the Nokia World conference held in Germany this week, Deutsche Telekom CEO, Rene Obermann, called upon handset manufacturers to reduce the number of features and make them simpler to use.

"There is too much complexity, too much jargon," he said, adding that 59 per cent of consumers believed their handset had too many functions while a massive 89 per cent felt that complexity on the device was a burden.

Devices are becoming ever-more intelligent, capable, and powerful, which means operators and vendors have got to work on simplification or risk leaving large numbers of less tech-savvy customers behind, Obermann advised.

With the Nokia event producing no surprises, apart from a few new handsets and services, Obermann labelled the mobile industry as still immature and warned the operator community that hard work was required to capture the new revenue streams around mobile Internet and applications.

"Our voice revenues are declining and they will continue to be under pressure, and the commoditisation of our traditional services has begun," said Obermann. "It is a question of balancing commoditised services on one side of the equation with making an effort to innovate and embrace new business models on the other - and that's a very difficult balance."

Obermann also forecast that consumers should be persuaded to store less data on their handsets. "Digital assets in the consumer space will increasingly be stored and managed in the cloud, rather than on the device," he said. But for this to happen, Obermann emphasised that customers would need to trust the industry, pointing to the numerous breaches in consumer data that had already happened.

Separately, T-Mobile UK, a subsidiary that normally fails to come first in any category, has enjoyed a victory after scooping the highest ratings in more than half of the categories that were included in a UK mobile broadband survey.

Amongst the categories where T-Mobile came out on top were billing, customer service, ease of use, installation, best upload and download speeds, and best value for money for data usage

For more on this story:
Total Telecom
and Broadband Expert

Related stories:
Simpler phones will boost uptake of services
Redefining the mobile UI
Fifty-four percent say they don't want or need mobile video
Nokia: Forget handsets, services are the way forward

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