Google Mobile Love-In Continues With Mobile Personalized Home

It’s barely two weeks into the year, and Google’s made it clear that it’s making a big push into mobile phones, whether it was the news earlier today of a deal with RIM to embed applications on its phones or getting Motorola to put a Google button on its devices. It’s made another move this afternoon, announcing a mobile version of its personlized home page, which delivers a version of the same personalized page users can set up on their computers, formatted for mobile devices. Again, it’s clear that Google (and Yahoo, for that matter) are trying to nudge mobile operators aside and become the face of the mobile internet, and it looks like carriers’ obsession with offering closed systems, separate from the rest of the internet may be coming back around and biting them. Why would people want to use carrier portals when they don’t integrate with the services they use on the web when they’re on a PC? People don’t maintain separate email accounts, or want to get their news from different places. The resistance to openness and integration is the threat to carriers, not their saving grace.

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Comments on “Google Mobile Love-In Continues With Mobile Personalized Home”

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Carl Gunell says:

Impact of Google and Yahoo on the mobile phone

The real issue is who will retain the revenues from the sponsored links and who will retain the associated revenues. Thus the impact of Google?s deal with RIM to embed its application or getting Motorola to put a Google button on its devices may not be fully understood.

Google makes much of its revenues from sponsored links, and in a world where there are more internet connected mobile phones than internet connected PCs, it is easy to understand why the mobile internet are of extreme importance to both Yahoo and Google.

But operators may be much better served by avoiding these relationships. With Google on the phone they are likely to retain 100% of the sponsored link revenues. A share of the sponsored links revenues may be of extreme importance to operators in an environment with declining ARPU. This is particularly true for the developing world where discretional spending is minimal with resulting difficulties to shift spending to services consumed on the mobile phone. Today, in many markets in the world operators are attempting a greater share of the Premium SMS revenues, in some cases up to 70% for a ringtone transaction to grow revenues. Obviously this is making the operators? PSMS and WAP billing mechanisms too costly and will drive up the price of content and/or hamper user access to compelling content.
Perhaps operators may be better suited to join forces with mobile Search and Suggestion engines developed specifically for mobile phones, such as JumpTap, where they can share in the sponsored link revenues and also share in the revenues from any resulting purchases. With both Yahoo and Google offering their own payment mechanisms the end result of adding Google to the mix will keep operators in the value chain, but completely out side the revenue chain (expect data usage)

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