Dennis Berman over at The Wall Street Journal is taking phone companies to the task and calling their bluff on the so-called next generation services. In this story, he writes:
bq. All these forces are pushing the big telecom companies to do something at which they’re pretty crummy: innovate. Here’s where telecom executives start to talk lovingly about the next Napsters — software and products that would make their service truly different from the next guy’s. Competing, they say, will mean being a lot less like a utility and much more like a whip-smart software company. Think Apple, not ConEd. I wish they could tell me what those services will be. Believe me, I’ve asked. But the truth is that they don’t have much beyond lip-service paid to “multimedia,” “security” and “the next Napster.” This stems from the fact that they’re all buying the same equipment and know-how from a tiny group of suppliers, such as Lucent and Nortel.