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Do you think it's in the future?


Mar 21, 2005, 8:45 AM
Imagine if we could only buy our televisions from the cable company, buy our computers from the internet service provider, buy our appliances from the electric company, buy our home telephones from the phone company, or buy our vehicles from a financing company (and only certain companies would offer certain vehicles)?

As crazy as this sounds, this is exactly what the cellular industry is right now. Do you ever think it will catch up to the real world where you can purchase a phone from anywhere and then choose your cellular service provider separately?

The cellular industry is so frustrating right now because in the area where I live, VZW is clearly the best provider, yet their phone choices are terrible. I wish I could find a basic...

Mar 21, 2005, 8:45 PM
Good point. I never thought of it that way.

Mar 22, 2005, 12:59 PM
It will still never get to that point, at least not in the near future.

The problem is, it's not like the cable or auto industry. there are different types of models in both of those, but they work off of the same technology (i.e. a ford can drive on all the same roads a chevy can).

There are two major different techs in the cell phone biz (gsm and cdma), and very very few phones that can do both. Also, phones are not designed directly for the consumer, they're designed for the carrier, which I think is an extra step, but I'm not sure it will change any time soon.

Essentially, though, none of that matters. It is possible to manufacture a phone that will work almost anywhere, on either kind of network. The problem is si...

Mar 23, 2005, 8:57 AM
I am not sure I agree with you that the price of the handsets would skyrocket if they were made to work on any network. 10 years ago they were probably saying that the price of phones would skyrocket if you wanted a camera or video on them. If you look at cell phones and computers 10 or 15 years ago, they had a lot less features but were basically being sold for about the same price as they are today. Demand drives technology but technology doesn't always mean at a higher cost (besides, if more business can sell a phone that is not already tied to a specific carrier, then there is more competition which will also help keep the costs down).

You are correct that it might not be in the near future, but just as you can order computers wi...

Mar 23, 2005, 9:49 AM
Very interesting thread. We have become so comfortable with the bundling model, that it might be difficult to change that. If you think about it goes on in other industries as well. The cable box cost me about 45 cents a month, the cable modem was free after rebate because I signed up for the service. We are living in a service based industry. The equipment is just a necessary evil. Some people here will say they sell cell phones or work in a cell phone store. NOPE! We sell subscriptions to the providers, and work in a shop for Cingular, Nextel etc. Maybe I am off topic a little, just felt like commenting. Good morning!

Mar 23, 2005, 10:25 AM
"There are two major different techs in the cell phone biz (gsm and cdma), and very very few phones that can do both. The problem is simple: If the system were to change so you can buy any phone and hook it to any network, the cost of handsets would skyrocket."

It's interesting that if you look at dvd players and recorders, there was a similar situation with 2 different types of formats (dvd+r and dvd-r). How did technology adjust to this, they started making dvd players that can play both formats and these new players are at basically the same cost as what the other players use to be at. I bet it would almost be impossible for you to buy a new dvd player that plays only one type of format...perhaps this could take place in the cellular...

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