Google needs its own Telco service not a phone...

What use is a phone if you don't own the network? Google seems to have the worng end of the stick...
Written by Tom Foremski, Contributor

All this fuss over Google's Nexus One phone reminds me of a quote from @shitmydadsays: "Son, no one gives a shit about all the things your cell phone does. You didn't invent it you just bought it. Anyone can do that."

Anyone can spec out a phone and have it built. A phone is nothing without the network. Google needs the network more than it needs its own phone.

Google needs its own wireless Telco business because otherwise it risks being blocked from the mobile Internet.

Whoever owns the wireless connection has tremendous power. They control what applications and services run on the wireless network.

Google risks being cut out of the network altogether, or it risks being a click or two away because of future business decisions made by a Telco. Net neutrality laws won't protect you from being a click or two away, and on a mobile phone, that means you might as well be in Siberia.

Telcos block innovation

The Nexus does nothing to challenge the power of the Telcos. The Telcos have invested heavily in technologies such as VOIP and faster data networks and have brought down their costs of operations tremendously, yet the cost of mobile plans hasn't gone down, it continues to rise.

The Telcos have the government on their side, it is a regulated industry, and one that brings in huge amounts of money to state and federal government agencies — take a look at your monthly bill and see the dozen or more taxes and other fees.

This relationship between government agencies and the Telcos helps keep out competition and keep monthly fees high.

Yet wireless data communications lies at the heart of many innovative products and services being developed by Silicon Valley companies.

The Telcos are holding back innovation because they control who is allowed to offer applications and services. They regularly block innovative features within cell phones. And the high cost of their monthly plans has created a digital divide far greater than the one on the desktop.

It is important to bring real competition into the wireless space to bring down costs, to bridge the digital divide, and to ensure that Google and tens of thousands of other companies can offer their applications and services on an even playing field.

A Google phone won't do it.

If Google acquired a Telco it would own its own network and it would also own a billing relationship with millions of customers. It could then run current and future services across that network knowing that it couldn't be blocked. It could also ensure that its partners and application developers would have open access. It would become a true platform.

If it doesn't do this it risks being blocked by a Telco that decides it is a competitor.

A phone is nothing without the network.

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