North by Northeast: An open letter to Steve Jobs and Eric Schmidt
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North by Northeast: An open letter to Steve Jobs and Eric Schmidt

“North of Northeast” is a column that offers commentaries from a Canadian perspective.: I have written several articles in the past that were highly critical of the cellular network owners, including one specifically related to the release of the original iPhone. Nothing has changed in the intervening years.

Let's face it. These guys are NOT your partners… or your friends. They have absolutely no interest in how your products work or what they do for the customers you share. They also have no interest in providing the speed, reliability or quality of service that your products demand, regardless of price. And let's be totally honest here, "price" is what it's all about with them.

They don't like your products. Why? Because they can't control them. They can't decide what the devices can and can't do. They can't charge for each and every "feature." They can't force customers, for example, to send all their photos through them, so they can bill air time. Then of course, there's that pesky Wi-Fi. God forbid that customers can use their device without going through them… for anything!

If you still needed proof, you only need to look at their recent actions at the Mobile World Conference in Barcelona.

The AT&T's, Verizon's, Rogers, Bell Canada's, etc. of this world just don't get it. In an older Apple parlance, they just don't "Think Different."

Apple and Google are the driving force behind a true revolution in information technology, the move to Cloud Computing. This move is already being hampered by companies who just don't have the vision, or simply are too greed-oriented to see the future. As we move deeper and deeper into this new paradigm, the bottlenecks are just going to become more and more frustrating, and the current "solutions" more and more expensive.

I believe Google is on the right track, but the fibre to the home pilot is just a beginning. If you want your customers to get the best experience out of both your hardware and software, it's becoming clear that you're going to have to own and control the networks too. You're not going to get any help from the current crop of carriers. It's time to put your war chests to work and build the IT networks of the future … reliable, fast, accessible, net neutral, but still reasonably priced networks that will give your customers unfettered access to your services… otherwise, what's the point?

-- Gerry Curry

 

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