Convergence... Just 'Cause

from the convergence-is-cool dept

There seems to be this obsession with "converged" devices, even when that convergence doesn't really make any sense for the consumer. The latest is the announcement today from BT in the UK that they've finally gotten around to launching their converged mobile/landline offering renamed (smartly) from Bluephone to Fusion. The quick glance sounds good. Use a mobile phone as a mobile outside, and have it automatically switch to a cheaper VoIP line inside your home. Except... then you look at the details and wonder where the real benefit is for consumers. You have to pay a rather high monthly fee to use the system -- which is likely to wipe out most of the per-minute savings. Meanwhile, with the rise of various flat-rate VoIP offerings, even a low per minute system doesn't make that much sense. In fact, as some are realizing, the only one who actually benefits from this offering is BT who gets you to overpay for three different things that you could have just set up for much cheaper on your own -- all for the "convenience" of using a single device that isn't very cool and doesn't have many of the features people expect in their mobile phone.
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