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August 19, 2009


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I suspect we can go further than that proposed by Andy Kessler.

Each mobile phone contract is essentially a bundle of handset purchase, handset finance, network access, call termination fees, directory services and value added services (such as voicemail). All of these ought to be available separately.

In my ideal (highly competitive) world, we would own our own phone numbers and be able to point them to any directory and value-added service provider for delivery over any network (to mobile or wired device).

If each new 4G handset had two logins (one for each network type and one for each SIP service) this could happen.

1) We could buy a phone and finance it with a credit card or savings.
2) Buy network access in access bundles (3G, 4G, wifi, depending on our needs and costs). Moving to another courtry briefly? Buy access there and add the network name and password to the phone.
3) Buy a SIP service to receive our calls and provide some value-added services (voicemail, voicemail transcription, address book sync, call blocking, etc).

It might make sense for the direct service (DNS-like, number to handset) to be bundled with the SIP and value add services, to simplify things for the mass market and keep some form of portability system.

With this method (much like the DNS system for the internet, except for the ultimate manager of the each TLD), there is competation for each part of the service.

Alas, this would require action by the regulators the regulators to first enable then force the unbundling.

Best wishes

Darryn Mitussis

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