Going beyond the bit pipe

Green Packet, one of the WiMax licensees in Malaysia, has announced that it would be partnering with IM (instant messaging) provider, MOR(F) Interactive Communications and marketing company E-Gal Corp.MOR(F) offers IM with a twist: it comes with a built in virtual pet.

Green Packet, one of the WiMax licensees in Malaysia, has announced that it would be partnering with IM (instant messaging) provider, MOR(F) Interactive Communications and marketing company E-Gal Corp.

MOR(F) offers IM with a twist: it comes with a built in virtual pet.

The move shows that Green Packet realizes it can't afford to be merely a bit-pipe player offering Internet access. There's not enough money to be made that way, especially with a price war for wireless data access already raging among the three mobile phone operators.

Value-added services is the way to go. I'm not sure that an IM service with a built-in virtual pet is something that consumers will pay for, though.

And especially if you consider that MSN Messenger, Yahoo Messenger and GoogleTalk are already quite well entrenched, it's going to be hard for any new IM service to make much headway.