Saturday, February 28, 2009

Less Wireless

Within the next 7 to 10 years, all the major wireless carriers will establish a standard shared cellular network technology with consistent performance all across the United States.

That would be nice, wouldn't it?

Wireless communication has become a critical part of the U.S. infrastructure, but all the competing technologies are preventing it from going that last mile, no pun intended.

Anywhere across the country you can plug your toaster into an AC outlet & make some toast; plug your telephone into the wall jack & make / receive calls; most of the time you can even plug your Ethernet cable into a network port & surf the Internet.

Not so with wireless. At least not yet.

The consolidation has already begun:
  • Sprint + Nextel
  • Verizon (AirTouch (US West Cellular)) + Alltel (Cellular One / Western Wireless)
  • AT&T + Cingular
  • T-Mobile + VoiceStream (Western Wireless)
All these mergers have trimmed the number of competing technologies, and it is just a matter of time until they reach a consensus on a communication standard.

The projected result of having one cell phone network?
  • You could buy the exact phone you want
  • It would work everywhere
  • Contracts would become a thing of the past
  • The basic monthly charge is a flat fee
  • Unlimited local service is included
  • Long distance is charged by time & distance
  • No more roaming charges
  • Fewer unsightly cell towers
That would be nice, wouldn't it?