4 thoughts on “Why do Phone Guys Want to Be like a PC”

  1. phone guys are anxious to move beyond voice revenues, which competition has driven down very low. Companies like Metro PCS and others have driven actual mobile prices to something like $0.03/min in real costs (assuming fixed/low arpu, unlimited local calling plans and 1200-1300 MOU/month). data-ish services like sms have larger margins.

  2. “Most new technology applications fail to achieve what was promised because of very simple human factors. Take for example a large company with a new e-mail system. In many organisations it is already common for executives to receive up to 100 e-mails a day – and this is the first day of the digital society. There are constant complaints of information overload and a real risk of serious error. Most people say that the majority of their written communications are electronic – a huge change in the last three years – and yet they also say their typing speeds are just as slow as they ever were, typically less than twenty five words per minute.

    A senior executive thinks at around 10,000 words a minute (a picture is worth a thousand words), and scans a newspaper at 5,000 words a minute. He or she speaks at around 100 words per minute on the phone to a client, and yet can type only perhaps 15 words per minute.

    What is the point of spending a fortune on new computer systems for people who cannot even type? The single most important technology tool for increasing productivity may be a typing course, and executives whose typing speed grows in three weeks from 20 to 40 words per minute will literally double their output.

    People say that it is quality not volume that counts and that speed will not increase quality. This is nonsense. If I phone an investment adviser I expect 100 words per minute of pure gold: world class advice at normal talking speed. Therefore his brain is capable of thinking new messages at that speed.

    But listening on the phone is very inefficient for me. I only get 100 words a minute from my adviser. I would prefer a 1,000 word e-mail which will take me less than a minute to read. That’s a ten-fold increase in my own productivity. But if my advisor can only type 20 words a minute, my own increase in productivity is at the cost of a five fold decrease in his own productivity, because it will take him at least five times as long to write in an e-mail what he would have said on the phone.

    The lesson is that e-mail works and the phone does not. Phone calls are very inefficient. The phone is a hundred year old invention that has not changed in any way whatever, except in cost, and the fact that I don’t need a wire to the exchange. Trying to get two people together in a phone call is increasingly difficult in a busy, global world where chances are the person in another country is not even awake when you are wanting to chat.”


  3. most of the complaints about phones-on-steroids are that they are not enough like a PC: you cannot easily transfer your own content on them, they have their own OS, etc. Voice-based services, which by definition exploit all that a phone does well, have simply not worked all that well – yet. the BREW model was a stab at getting the carrier out of the way, sort of, and trying to let a phone remain fundamentally a phone. The blackberry proved people wanted, no…craved to do more with something they could shlep on their person. carriers and vendors are chasing that craving.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.