Data On My Phone? But Why?
from the disconnect dept
There's been this absolute certainty by some in the wireless industry that "wireless data" was clearly the next big thing. However, it still seems like there's as lot of wishful thinking going on. We've pointed out that users tend to want phones that work for communicating first, before they're interested in all sorts of features. Combined with the fact that the costs of data services and phones is way too high, while the industry insists people want features they've rejected for forty years, such as video calls, and is it really a surprise at all that a recent survey found that not one person asked could say what kind of data package they had on their mobile phone? The problem is the same as it's been for years. The industry takes the "build it (and hype it!) and they will come" approach as opposed to actually understanding (a) why and how people use mobile phones and (b) explaining to them the real benefits of mobile data. So, they miss out on the fact that people use phones to communicate, not consume information. And they tell people about all sorts of useless things, focusing on the technology, rather than why it might be useful. If they really want people to use and accept data they need to move more towards flat-rate pricing (as the article suggests) and open up the ecosystem to encourage development of useful applications, rather than having the operators take random guesses at what apps people will want and then waiting for people to show up.