Archive for September, 2010

Psst – EVOs in stock online

Monday, September 27th, 2010

Apparently, a bunch of EVO inventory has arrived and EVOs are now available online at the Everything Plus portal. If you’ve been waiting for the EVO to be available online to sign up for the employee referral plan, now’s the time!

Reminder: Everything Plus is an employee referral plan available only online and only for new lines of service. To sign up, go to sprint.com/everythingplus and enter a Sprint employee e-mail address and 3 digit CID. If you’re a regular reader of my blog, feel free to use my info (russ.s.mcguire@sprint.com, 383).

Hurry while EVOs are still available!

Mobile 2.0: Are Mobile Operators like IBM?

Monday, September 27th, 2010

Another interesting discussion Tuesday on the Mobile 2.0 Fireside Chat panel was the one that Tony Fish used to lead off the discussion. Tony asked “If Apple is the new Microsoft, and Google is the new Apple, where do Mobile Operators fit?”

My answer was that Mobile Operators are the new IBM.

I assume Tony’s references to Microsoft and Apple were referencing the PC Revolution of the mid-1980s. For decades, IBM had dominated the industry, dictating to the rest of the ecosystem the rules under which they could play. Apple was birthed in innovation that showed the world what was possible in a personal computer world, but it was the open architecture introduced by IBM’s PC group, with Microsoft and Intel at the core, that redefined the entire industry.

The question is whether Mobile Operators will be the IBM that focused on using OS/2 to try to put Microsoft back in their subservient box. Or, will Mobile Operators be the IBM that became a champion of open source, enabling tremendous innovation that only sometimes directly benefited Big Blue.

Unfortunately, most Mobile Operators, by definition, suffer from Big Bell Dogma, thinking they can and should dominate the ecosystem, strong-arming upstarts like Google into staying in a constrained box.

A few operators though, including Sprint and my co-panelist from Telefonica O2, believe that operators have their value-creating role, but we are all best served when we enable innovation that accelerates growth for the entire ecosystem.

Of course, I don’t need to tell you which strategy worked best for IBM…

Mobile 2.0: What Drives Growth in Mobility?

Saturday, September 25th, 2010

Tuesday I participated in the Mobile 2.0Business Day” in San Francisco. Thanks to Gregory, Mike, Daniel, Peter, and Rudy for putting on another great event.

The industry has come a long way since the first Mobile 2.0 event in 2006 – in fact, it has grown into the vision that was being explored way back then. In 2007, I participated in a “fireside chat” panel moderated by Tony Fish, and on Tuesday, I found myself back on the same panel, moderated again by Tony.

My co-panelists this year were James Parton of Telefonica O2, Fabio Sisinni of Paypal, and David Katz of Yahoo. Tony did a good job of leading us through a broad array of topics. I’ll probably touch on a couple of the other topics in other posts, but for now, I think I’ll focus on the discussion towards the end of the panel that was most thought provoking for me.

Tony provoked us with a statement along the lines of: “I don’t believe that there’s really any innovation in mobile. If the best we have to offer is location check-in apps, we don’t have much to be proud of.”

I responded by identifying four drivers of innovation and growth in mobility. Having had more time to think about it, I’ll add a fifth.

1. The Mobile Internet. Much of the innovation we’ve seen so far is simply derived from mobility catching up with the desktop in terms of processing power, graphics, and of course, broadband with 4G. Much of what we see in the App Stores are simply things we’ve traditionally done on a desktop, perhaps tweaked a bit to work well in a mobile environment. There’s nothing wrong with that and we’ve certainly seen tremendous growth driven by this simple catching up.

2. Context. What sets mobility apart from the Internet is the rich contextual information that has never before been available. Where I am. Who I’m with/near. What I’m doing. All of this context made possible in large part because the mobile experience is intensely personal. So far, the contextual aspects of mobility have mostly played out in location-based apps including navigation and check-in services. But again, nothing wrong with that, and as additional contextual data becomes available, we should expect to continue to see innovation and growth.

3. The Internet of Things, Machine to Machine, Connected Devices, Bandwidth Built In, whatever you want to call it… I believe that every product that today has a microprocessor, in the future will have wireless connectivity. We’ve already seen the impact of the Kindle and other eReaders on the publishing industry. Over the next few years we will see tremendous innovation and growth driven by more and more products having wireless built in.

4. Synchronization/Coordination. As more and more devices around us have wireless connectivity and different pieces of the context, those objects will start communicating with each other to create tremendous new value for the end user.

5. Business Integration. The one I forgot about on Tuesday is the one I’ve probably focused on more than any other the past few years. I believe that mobility will be integrated into every product, every service, and every process by businesses across industries. This will enable tremendous innovation in how businesses compete and will result in significant industry growth.

Thanks Tony! These are the kinds of things I like to think about!

Observations: Uncategorized: September 24, 2010

Friday, September 24th, 2010

Standard disclaimer: don’t take from my selections, ordering, headlines, etc. any indications of the interests or plans of my employer (if you do, you’ll undoubtedly be disappointed when they don’t play out.)

Observations: Devices – September 23, 2010

Thursday, September 23rd, 2010

Standard disclaimer: don’t take from my selections, ordering, headlines, etc. any indications of the interests or plans of my employer (if you do, you’ll undoubtedly be disappointed when they don’t play out.)

Observations: Services – September 22, 2010

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010

Standard disclaimer: don’t take from my selections, ordering, headlines, etc. any indications of the interests or plans of my employer (if you do, you’ll undoubtedly be disappointed when they don’t play out.)

Observations: Applications – September 20, 2010

Tuesday, September 21st, 2010

Standard disclaimer: don’t take from my selections, ordering, headlines,

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etc. any indications of the interests or plans of my employer (if you do, you’ll undoubtedly be disappointed when they don’t play out.)

Observations: Carriers – September 19, 2010

Sunday, September 19th, 2010

Standard disclaimer: don’t take from my selections, ordering, headlines, etc. any indications of the interests or plans of my employer (if you do, you’ll undoubtedly be disappointed when they don’t play out.)

Important Update to the SERO Premium FAQ

Friday, September 17th, 2010

I like to bring good news, but in openly sharing, sometimes I have to be the bearer of news that won’t be seen as good by many.

An additional clarifying point

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has been added to the FAQ on the new SERO Premium plan. Read to the end of the paragraph below. I apologize if the next to last sentence effects you and dampens your excitement about the October 1 options.

What are the plan details of the new SERO Premium rate plans?

As of 10/1/10, there will be two SERO Premium plans available, SERO Premium 500 at $40/month and SERO Premium 1250 at $59.99/month. SERO Premium plans will match current SERO rate plans with two added features, Any Mobile Anytime and Unlimited GPS Navigation. SERO Premium rate plans will be compatible with all devices offered by Sprint. Only customers on a current SERO rate plan as of 10/1/10 will be able to swap to a SERO Premium rate plan. SERO Premium rate plans will not be discountable – customers on current SERO plans receiving discounts above and beyond the already discounted SERO rate will lose those discounts when moving to a SERO premium plan. 4G handsets such as HTC EVO 4G and Samsung Epic 4G will also require the $10 Premium Data add-on.

PC World’s Top 10 Cellphones

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

PC World has come out with their list of the top 10 cellphones on the market in the U.S. I guess this helps explain why the Epic (#1) and Evo (#2) are so

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popular with customers that they still aren’t available for Sprint employees like me to buy.

If you aren’t yet a Sprint customer, now might be a great time to take advantage of my employee referral info to save some money. Go to http://www.sprint.com/everythingplus and enter my e-mail (russ.s.mcguire@sprint.com) and my id (383) and start enjoying the power of either one of the top 2 cellphones on the market today.