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Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Nokia Ovi..... how long before it includes voice-based services?

Interesting announcement from Nokia & Vodafone today - easier access to both Voda Live! and Ovi services from Voda-ised Nokia devices.

"Customers will get faster and easier access to all of Vodafone's Internet and entertainment services as well as all of Ovi from Nokia services on a wide range of handsets"

"Accessible from a computer or compatible Nokia device, Ovi includes the Nokia Music Store, Nokia Maps and N-Gage, with more services to follow"

This is clearly very significant, and goes a long way towards validating the Ovi strategy overall. But I'll let others comment on its impact on mobile gaming, music etc as these are not really areas I focus on that much.

Instead, I'll fly a slightly more disruptive kite about this model....

I wonder... will Nokia ever be really controversial with Ovi and start to include VoIP applications on the platform? Perhaps not 'plain vanilla' VoIP person-to-person telephony, but maybe what I'm calling non-telephony VoIP (eg voice mashups with social networking, in-game communications, remote dictaphone capabilities, conferencing etc...).

I'd say it makes more sense for Nokia to do this sort of voice-based application than the operators themselves, at least in the medium term until HSPA+ or LTE is rolled out (which should have properly integrated & optimised VoIP)

This would also fit extremely well with the sort of operator/3rd-party partnership model I'm envisaging for innovative VoIPo3G services - which I'm forecasting could reach 45m users by 2012 in my new report on VoIPo3G Business Models.

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