Mobile carrier networks are becoming more and more alike, while revenue is continuing to decline. Within a couple of years, carriers will all have virtually the same technology, coverage and service, within a system of defined broadband capacity. Plus, competition is increasing, with Apple, Google and Dish Network reportedly discussing launching their own wireless services.
That’s why the major wireless carriers – AT&T, Verizon Wireless, Sprint and T-Mobile – will need to find other ways to drive revenue and differentiate from one another. They can make both happen if they serve individual industries with value-added propositions.
Those of us in the software sector know from hard experience that content must be a differentiating factor. It’s the only way to add value, create loyalty and drive revenue among customers with high data consumption. To put it bluntly, carriers must give these customers a reason to subscribe beyond coverage or speed. With the bring-your-own-device phenomenon (BYOD) growing among high-data-use enterprises, the number of data subscriptions will continue to plummet as professionals combine devices and plans to improve efficiency.
Nowhere is this more apparent than the trucking industry, a high-value customer segment for wireless carriers where three million trucks will soon need to be equipped with advanced electronic on-board recorder (EOBR) technology in order to comply with new regulations. There is tremendous opportunity for carriers to step up and create industry-specific content for this market, allowing fleets to improve performance with real-time data point monitoring, location-based services and other premium features.
I’ve talked with hundreds of fleet operators and drivers. We know they want mobile – whether it’s delivered by the fleet operator or in a BYOD world where the driver’s device runs the show. Either way, it’s the content that really matters. They’ll commit to a system and a carrier that will help them maintain regulatory compliance, while measuring a laundry list of performance factors that are needed to slash costs and run profitably – things such as fuel efficiency, hard braking, shift patterns, idle engine wear, trip reporting, speeding and much more. They want compliance, safety and performance improvement – all via mobile technology.
The trucking business is just one example. Businesses need wireless carriers to step up and deliver mobile solutions that help our productivity and profitability by using the immense power and immediacy of mobile. We’ll be loyal customers and all attendees at the party will benefit.
The question now is who among the major carriers will take the lead?
Edited by Brooke Neuman