The internet atmosphere is the infrastructure that makes the cloud possible.
Today’s announcement about Cisco’s acquisition of Linksys is one that leaves me scratching my head a little. What is the logic behind this? Could this represent a change in Cisco’s strategy? Or is it a realization in the part of the networking equipment vendor that its future may not be enhanced by moving into the now heavily depressed telecommunication field. Let’s imagine for a second what this could do in the long term. First of all, by acquiring Linksys, Cisco gets a strong foothold in the small office/home office market as well as the hobbyist/consumer market. Why? Largely because this is where Linksys’ strength is. What Cisco gets out of this is a new source of revenues in a market it has had troubles getting into. The announcement that they will not change the name of the company and will let it run as an independent unit seems to point to that end. Second, it provides Linksys with strong support in enterprise sales. Linksys has been getting into the enterprise largely through the back-door, with employees installing cheap wireless routers in offices. Now, with Cisco’s backing they can get into the enterprise as part of a more complete solution. The…Read More
Imagine an industry where customers are leaving more quickly than they are joining. If you were part of that industry, would you: try to increase your level of customer satisfaction ? or fight any provision that would increase competition in your industry? If you are the wireless phone industry, you will go for the latter. The issue at hand is number portability. What is number portability? Well, put quite simply, it is a way to be able to use the same phone number regardless of which service provider you are using. It is essentially what now allows us to change long distance service or local service carriers from our incumbent bell operating company (for example, Verizon in New York) to another service provider (following the same example, one could now go to AT&T or RCN for phone service). Technically, and from the consumer standpoint, it’s a really great idea that fosters choice and increases competition. To the existing phone monopolies, it’s a nightmare because it means that they now must be offering better service or face losing their customers to the competition. The history In 1996, under section 251(b)(2) of the Telecommunications Reform Act, the US government specified that all…Read More
I was recently speaking at a conference called Escandinavia 2000, which covered the state of the Internet in Scandinavia. During that conference, I had a chance to speak to a number of people about the state of wireless in the Scandinavian countries. Here’s what I’ve learned and how it can help those of you who are working in the wireless space in the United States. The Hybrid World Lives! Many of you may remember the February 10th issue about Hybrid Computing. While talking with Birger Steen, CEO of Scandinavia Online, I discovered that the concept is not that far off the market. It is his contention that WAP-enabled phones are largely a pain in the back when it comes to interface. Having to key in every letter on the small phone keyboard is far from the easiest thing in the world. As a result, Scandinavia Online has developed a set of services that allows users of their portal jump on their site and configure their WAP view on the web. From his point of view, this is the best service he can offer now to wireless users. The point was reiterated by a few people around the conference that told…Read More