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Google & YouTube to combine Mobile + Comms + Content

We have long banged on about the need for operators, particularly mobile operators, to learn from the Web 2.0 social networking companies that combine user-generated content with a forum for chat and interaction. At the Telco 2.0 event I detected a distinct reluctance from operators to embrace this ‘challenge’ (opportunity?). Advertising revenues are for some reason considered dirty and users that don’t generate big ARPU’s are automatically low-value (tell Google that).

Now it seems that Mohammed is going to the mountain as YouTube has announced that it will be developing a system where its users can share videos created on the mobile without having to upload them via a PC.

The Red Herring article also discusses the fact that a day later Google announced that it has a very fast, very friendly Java application for Gmail on the mobile. Operators have done ok with the Blackberry, but have never really made in-roads into the consumer mobile email market (no consumer will pay £45 a month for the Blackberry service). With data rates coming down and the internet players providing mobile email clients, I wonder whether operators have missed the boat?

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Here in the U.S., over-the-top video to the home has already started to segment consumers into those who find IPTV appealing, and everyone else (mostly 18-34 segment).

Given this new insight about over-the-top to mobiles, I'm wondering if the telcos collectively will be forced to walk away from the early-adopter and younger segment of the market.

It's more than strategy disconnect, it's a total culture mismatch. Meaning, operators not only missed the boat, but they're left standing on the dock *alone * once again.

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