The Development Of Mobile Telephony Essay Research — страница 4

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After this threshold has been passed, more and more mobile phones are purchased by private users, then the mobile phone has to be marketed as an affordable, lifestyle accessory. For many mobile network operators, this means subsidising the initial purchase cost. In many markets, mobile phones are sold for a fraction of their ‘real’ cost, with the network operators and service providers making up the difference through call revenue – on air – time contracts that usually run for a minimum of twelve months.Other marketing initiatives include differential tariffing. High – volume business users pay a relatively high ‘rental line’ but with low call costs. Low volume ‘emergency only’ users pay a low line rental, but calls are charged at a higher rate. Geographical

charging, with users being charged at a lower rate for calls made in their ‘home cell’, is a further marketing tool. Operators are now starting to differentiate themselves through Value Added Services (VAS), including voice mail, fax and e-mail. Through Short Message Services (SMS) and business group services, using Intelligent Network (IN) technology, operators will be able to create ever more individually tailored services packages, which the user will be able to use in networks other than his home network. The mobile phones themselves are an area where technological advances have helped expand the market. When the first cellular networks came into operation, car-phones were the only option. The size and power requirements made it unfeasible for users to carry their phones

around with them. Even in the mid 1980s Ericsson was proudly advertising the ‘Hotline Combi’, a portable phone that weighed just 2.7 kilogrammes, and came with its own shoulder strap (Mobile Telephony – Market Overview 1997). Since then, the size and weight of mobile phones has been cut dramatically, and improvements in battery technology and power – saving features have increased battery life. Ericsson’s first hand – held portable phone was introduced in 1986, it weighed 665 grams, and provided 40 minutes of call time on a single battery charge. Three generations later today’s mobile phones weigh less than 200 grams, are less than a quarter of the size, and provide twice as much talk time. Costs too have fallen, the real price (as opposed to the often –

subsidised purchase price) of a mobile phone in 1996 was less the one fifth of what it was in 1985.Technically there is no reason why mobile phones should not become the norm for everyone. The use of radio technologies combined with the advanced ’small cell’ technologies now being put into place, would provide sufficient capacity for everyone to use a mobile phone, instead of a fixed phone. As volumes have increased, and as standardised technologies such as GSM have produced scale economies, the cost of providing telephone services over a mobile network has come down. In many cases, it is now cheaper for network operators to connect new subscribers using radio rather than by running wires to their homes, and indeed ‘radio in the local loop’ techniques derived from

cellular mobile technologies are proving increasingly popular with wired network operators around the world. But if everyone had a mobile phone what would happen to the fixed networks? Of course, fixed network telephone connections will continue to exist, and grow in number. There are still plenty of occasions when people make calls to an organisation or place, rather than to a person. And even if all private individuals have mobile phones, the likelihood is that their fixed-phone will evolve into something new, for example, the entry point to the ‘information superhighway’, offering a multitude of interactive broad band services such as video telephony, movies on demand, tele-shopping and teleworking. The mobile phones themselves will continue to reduce in size and be easier

to use, with new functions and features being added and battery life being extended all the time. “Thirty years from now, the phone could look like a watch, a shirt button, or a broach…..The shirt button phone will be an immensely powerful voice-activated PC, based around an evolved microchip many times more powerful than the current Intel Pentium chips.” (The Times 17/11/97). The dramatic growth of mobile telephony has demonstrated how important convenience and freedom are to users. The Internet, with its ease of use and universal availability, offers the potential for equally dramatic growth in mobile data. Mobile computing is nothing new, but it has suffered in the passed from a variety of complicated factors that have delayed its widespread acceptance. Two important