Wednesday, January 30, 2002

Connectivity: What it is and why it is so important ... and why it must be separated from content and applications. Tying content and services to connectivity may be good for the earnings of connectivity providers when the users have no alternative, but it's bad for the economy and industry as a whole because it blocks new applications. This is the situation we have with ubiquitous mobile access right now - the only alternative is to choose between very few GSM network providers with the same ridiculous prices for data transfer. An SMS message is priced at 0.20 € and contains 160 bytes of data - the same price as a minute of voice connectivity which is about 700 times as much data. This is crazy. GPRS data transfer is priced at approx 0.01 € per kbyte, which is still 5 times more expensive than voice data (assuming one second of voice is 2 kbyte and prices of German GSM providers).