Apple predicted to become direct mobile service provider

ipad new Apple predicted to become direct mobile service provider

A veteran wireless industry strategist has predicated that Apple will launch a direct wireless service for the iPad and iPhone, while Google will follow suit.

A veteran wireless industry strategist has predicated that Apple will launch a direct wireless service for the iPad and iPhone, while Google will follow suit.

 
Whitey Bluestein, who has advised companies on mobile strategy for over two decades, told attendees of the Informa MVNO Industry Summit in Barcelona that Apple was likely preparing a major new move into the wireless service market.
 
Citing a series of Apple's pending patents from 2006 onwards, one of which deals with network architecture required to become a wireless service provider, Bluestein postulated that Apple will change how it approaches wireless for its products in the future.
 
He predicted that the launch of such a service, which would provide phone, data, voice and roaming, would be “in the near future,” citing an extension of the network architecture patent in Autumn of last year.
 
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He speculated that Apple will likely offer mobile data plans with iPads, rather than selling them with AT&T or Verizon data plans, which could upset its former partners. However, this would give Apple direct control and a larger slice of the profits, though it will have to fork over an initial investment to make up for the subsidies offered by existing operators.
 
Bluestein suggested Apple will avail of its popular iTunes Store, where there are 250 million accounts, to offer activation, data and international roaming plans.
 
Other plans could include an ala carte model for providing iPhone customers with voice, data and message plans as an alternative to their existing mobile operator.
 
Bluestein also believes that Google will follow suit, taking advantage of its ability to acquire companies and services to fill the gaps in its system.
 
“The battleground is set, but Apple will be the first mover,” said Bluestein. “Google will have to scramble because it lacks retail distribution, experience with subscriber services and the iTunes ecosystem of content. iTunes and the iTunes Store provide Apple with one-click buying and customer care. Google can acquire most of these capabilities, as it has before, but it is not a core competency of the company.”