The Gradual Merging Of Telco, Cable And Wireless Into Connectivity

from the it's-all-coming-together dept

For years, it’s been pretty clear to plenty of people that a few different industries have been merging. The cable industry and the telco industry are a great example. The two compete so directly these days, that it’s becoming clear that it’s really just the “connectivity” industry that we’re dealing with, and the differences between telcos and cable companies is barely worth mentioning, other than looking at their specific strategies (along with their limitations and opportunities based on their legacy infrastructure). Another area that’s been a bit of oddball as a separate industry is “wireless” or “mobile” industry. Clearly, in many cases, it’s been sort of a subset of the traditional telco industry. And, with today’s Sprint deal, it’s getting tacked on to the cable space as well. Clearly, they’re all merging into a single arena — and the impact of “wireless” won’t be just another service, but the ability to disconnect all of the previous services and make them completely mobile. That’s where the real opportunities are, and where we should expect to see plenty of innovation in the next few years — using mobility to let people do things that they simply couldn’t do when they were tethered in the past. It seems that the folks with money see that pretty clearly as well. The majority of venture capital money going into “telco” businesses this year actually went specifically into wireless businesses.

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Comments on “The Gradual Merging Of Telco, Cable And Wireless Into Connectivity”

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MacyH says:

The only news here is how slow and messy its becom

If there’s any news here, it’s not that the so callled Negroponte Flip is occurring, but that it’s become such an expensive, messy and disorginized process. We’re now close to seeing the re-monopolization of the US telecom industry into the hands of a few very large companies.

The US regulatory system has now become so distorted by the overwhelming influence of entrenched cable tv and RBOC interests that consumer interests (and customer service) have become the lowest priority.

Where are the politicians? Every attempt to enact any type of telecom reform has either morphed into re-monpolization enablement or been hijacked by the RIAA/MPAA/copyright interests. In short, our legislators tell us that there’s not enough consumer (and media) outrage for them to pass a bill.

Sadly I predict you’ll see more consumer interest in dealing with RIAA/MPAA type issues first because overly agressive legal action (combined with very poor anti-copy software attempts) has raised consumer awareness to the point that Congress will do something.

In the meantime, the US will continue to fall behind in broadband and wireless while the telcos, cablecos and media giants all benefit from their efforts to retard (and control) convergence.

Howard (user link) says:

It's not quite there yet...

I have been waiting for the merge of PDA, laptop, and cellphone. So far, PDA-cellphones are not quite ready for prime time, and it looks like the laptop will be around for a while. The I/O on a PDA just doesn’t quite do it for me. I’m not quite ready to give up my laptop yet, although there are places and times I just don’t want to carry it (and I have my PDA with me just about everywhere). So it seems to me that the logical convergence is going to occur around the PDA, provided somebody can integrate a good cellphone at a reasonable cost.

At least my daily-carry electronic gizmo count is down to 3, since the pager has been swept into the dustbin of history. When somebody finally makes a reasonably-priced PDA-cellphone that actually does both jobs well, my gizmo count will be down to 2. Then, if you could get some really good display and input technology (always-on internet, voice, and eyeglass-mounted HUD, anyone?) on a PDA-sized computer at a good price, my gizmo count could go to 1.

Next step after that, I suppose, is the internet implant…

Charlie Sierra says:

No Subject Given

Mike, Mike, Mike,

Please pull your head out of the clouds. This is nothing but the @home scenario part 2.

The deal has a mere 3 year exclusive term, which as we all know, by then the FCC will finally auction off the old analog TV spectrum, and guess who will be ready with a bid? Thats right the MSOs.

Gary Forsee is a moron. (always has been)

Sprint-Nextel have invested tens and tens and tens of billions into their wireless (blackhole?) network, and all they could get from the MSOs for 50% of ownership of new JV subs is $100m split 4-5 ways.

What a crock.

The MSOs are laughing their asses off.

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