I see that O2 UK is about to launch its 3G dongle service, aiming it primarily at its existing customers, and offering a discounted (but still high, especially for an 18 month contract) price.
This maps onto developments elsewhere, for example by Hutchison 3, which also encourages multi-device and multi-subscription users.
This makes a lot of sense to me. Why try & charge an extra few £ a month for someone accessing the web on their phone.... and possibly have to subsidise a device upgrade to get one with a decent browser... when you can charge £20 a month for a separate (and very cheap) device? Which then connects to the user's existing computing and user-interface platform (the PC), which the operator doesn't need to design or test or subsidise or distribute?
Yes, I know the arguments about bit-pipes and the possibility of selling advertising and assorted mobile-phone centric web apps. But the reality is that nobody is buying them, and the amount of paid-for browsing or data bundles on phones is low, whilst 3G modems & subscriptions are flying off the shelves.
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