Voice and Messaging 2.0

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What to learn from - and how to compete with - Internet Communications Services

 Voice and Messaging 2.0 is Telco 2.0's analysis of the industry's traditional core business, traditionally c.80% of $3 trillion Telco revenues, based on our unique insight into the emerging competition, the industry value chain, and original research into user needs.

There is a great wave of change and innovation in voice and messaging, although many telcos are missing out. Innovative new players are stepping in and there is opportunity for telcos is to work with them rather than compete - there are genuine opportunities as well as threats. This report illuminates the evolving opportunities and threats, and provides an invaluable guide to success in this exciting new world. (April 2008)

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This report is now availalable to members of our Telco 2.0 Research Executive Briefing Service. Below is an introductory extract and list of contents from this strategy Report that can be downloaded in full in PDF format by members of the executive Briefing Service here.

For more on any of these services, please email / call +44 (0) 207 247 5003 

Key Points

  • An in-depth profile of the new Voice Applications opportunity.
  • Identifies and profiles the most interesting of the current crop of innovations.
  • Provides an original framework for assessing and developing successful new voice and messaging services.
  • Profiles the increasing threat to the traditional vertically-integrated model of voice services posed by these services.
  • Shows the surprising degree to which industry experts expect the landscape of voice and messaging, and increasingly 'presence' oriented services, to change in the foreseeable future.
  • Shows the pressing need for a different approach by Telcos.
  • Describes the strategies and practical approaches most likely to succeed in the near and long term.

Who is this report for?

The report is for senior (CxO) decision-makers and business strategists setting business strategy, and for product managers, and strategic sales, business development and marketing professionals acting in the Voice arena in the following types of organisations:

  • Fixed & Mobile Broadband Operators - to set and drive strategy.

  • Vendors & Business Partners - to understand customer need and develop winning customer propositions.

  • Regulators and Standards Bodies - to inform strategy and policy making.

Strategists and CxOs in IT and Investment Companies may also find this report useful to understand the future landscape of the Telecoms and related industries, and to help to spot likely winning and losing investment and operational strategies in the market.

Background Context – Voice & Messaging Revenues Under Threat

Core voice and messaging revenues – which remain 80% of the Telecoms industry’s global revenue – are under stronger threat than ever before:

  • Mobile operators are moving to HSPA and WiMAX networks that facilitate 'over the top' voice; flat-rate or supersize buckets of data are becoming cheap and widespread; maturing dual-mode and pico/femtocells technologies threaten the 'mobility premium' at home and in the office; and non-operator SMS and IM services force large/unlimited message bundles and price competition.
  • Fixed operators have found continued profit in enterprise voice, but voice threatens to migrate from being a distinct service (through a PBX or even IP Centrex) into just being a feature of an online collaboration and productivity suite. Consumer social media and communications technologies increasingly penetrate the enterprise, further weakening the differentiator of the telco as an IT services and communications integrator.

The consequence of this diversification in means of delivering voice and messaging is a major change to the forecast nature of industry revenues.

SR Voice And Messaging Image 1
Yet the industry does not believe that it truly understands it's customers' real needs from the most core products

Voice and Messaging Survey Image 2

(Source: STL Partners Telco 2.0™ Voice & Messaging Survey, January 2007 and 2008 (A survey of operators and vendors across the Telco industry); n=327

The Voice & Messaging report describes the forecast evolution of the market and shows how Telcos can work with the market to develop new services and distribution channels. It provides an original framework for identifying competitive characteristics of new applications and profiles 70 of the latest interesting Telco 2.0 innovations that we’ve encountered in our research – an invaluable tool for visionary CxOs, strategists and product managers alike.

Key Questions Answered

This report uniquely answers 3 key questions:

  1. What do 'End Users' really want – what are their unmet telephony and messaging needs and how to address them profitably?
  2. How to respond commercially – what features and functionality will enable telcos to grow their core business?
  3. How to refine product strategy – what is the best migration path to meet current and future market conditions?

In addition, the report seeks to help operators and vendors maximise future opportunities by answering the following questions:

  • What are the key unmet user needs?
  • Where is the money in telephony over the next 5 years?
  • What kinds of disruptors are there? When will they become a material threat? How to react to them?
  • What are the important trends in telephony toll arbitrage?
  • How to work with the Internet giants?
  • How can you manage cannibalisation of SMS and MMS revenue by IM?
  • What should you be doing about interoperability of new services?
  • How will the Web be voice-enabled, and what's the impact?
  • When will click-to-call take off, and what to do about it?
  • What new revenue opportunities are there?
  • How can Telco 2.0™ business strategies be applied to voice?
  • What needs to be done to generate near-term benefits?
  • What are the pricing strategies to adopt or avoid?

Case Studies, Companies and Services, and Technologies & Applications Covered

Detailed Case Studies: 3UK, Skype, Iliad. Truphone, PhoneGnome, Verizon iObi, VoiceSage, Tesco Mobile.

Other Companies and Services Covered: 3 SkypePhone, 3GPP, 3UK, AOL IM, Apple, Apple iPhone, Apple Visual Voicemail, AT&T, AT&T Digital One Rate, Avaya, Bebo, Blackberry, Body Shop, BT Fusion, BT Web 21C, C&W, Carphone Warehouse, Change for Charity, Craigslist, Cyworld, DailyMotion, Dell, Easymobile, Ebay, Embarq eGo Phone, Facebook, FCC, Flickr, Fonolo, France Telecom, free.fr, Freebox, Fring, Gizmo, Google, Google Android, Google Mail, GrandCentral, GSMA, Habbo Hotel, Hutchison 3G, Indesit, Interoute, iPhone, iPod, iTunes, Jabber, Jaduka, Jaxtr, Lebara, Level3, Linked-In, LiveJournal, MCI Friends & Family, Meebo, Metacafe, MSN, Mxit, MySpace, NeuStar, NMS Communications, Nokia, Nokia 60 Series, O2, Orkut, QQ, Qualcomm, Ribbit, RIM, Salesforce.com, Softbank (Yahoo!), Telekom Austria, Telfort / KPN, TeliaSonera (IM), Terranet, The Cloud, TiVo, T-Mobile Flext, TV Perso, Twitter, Verisign, Virgin Mobile, Virgin SA MVNO, Vodafone, Vodafone "stop the clock", Vonage, Vyke, Wal-Mart, Xbox, Yahoo!, YouTube.

Technologies & Applications Covered: 3G, Adobe AIR, ADSL2, AJAX, ASP, BREW, BSS, Calendars, Call Routing, CDMA, Communications Enabled Business Processes (CEBP), DECT, DNS, DRM, DSL, DVD, ENUM, Femtocell, Flash, Gaming Devices, GPRS, GSM/WLAN, HSDPA, IM, IMS, IP, IPTV, ISDN, IVR, Java MIDP, LTE, MMS, Mobile, Mod_Python, MS Silverlight, Network Address Book Synchronisation, NGN, OTT, P2P, PBX, PC, PHP, Picture Messaging, Prepay Mobile, PSTN, PVR, Ring-back, Ringtones, Roaming, Set-top boxes, SIM, SIP, SMS, SS7/TDM, To-do lists, UI, UMTS, Unified Communications, USB Dongles, VCR, Visual Voicemail, Voice, VOIP, Wi-Fi, WiMax, WLAN, XMPP.

Applications & Companies covered in the directory: Abbeynet, Apple iPhone, Bridgeport Networks, Brightroam, Bubbletalk, CallButler, Cellity, Convenos, Craigsnumber, DoCoMo, Evoca, flurry, fring, GoLoco, GrandCentral, Hotxt, icall, Ifbyphone, imity, iotum, Jaduka, Jaiku, jajah, Jangl, Jaxtr, Jott, Kadoink, Kirusa, Loopt, Lypp, Me.dium.com, meebo, Mig33, MobileMeWorld, mySay, Nimbuzz, Octro, Ogo, OZ Communication, PacketMobile, Pheeder, PhoneGnome, Phonevite, Pica, Pinger, Pownce, Radio Handi, renzoo, Ring2Conferencing, SearchtoPhone, Sightspeed, Sniff, Supcast.com, Tex2me, Toktumi, Treasuremytext, TruPhone, Userplane, Utterz, Vapps, Verizon, Vonage, Vyke, wablet, Woize, YackPack, Yahoo! OneConnect, yak4ever, Yugma, Zygo Communications

Summary of Contents

  • Executive Summary
  • Introduction
  • Part 1 - Understanding user needs
  • Part 2 - Market dynamics
  • Part 3 - How non-carrier communications spread
  • Part 4 - How operators gain and lose control
  • Part 5 - Competing in a low-cost world
  • Part 6 - Future corporate strategy
  • Part 7 - Finding new markets
  • Part 8- A theory of communication systems
  • Part 9 - A framework for product innovation
  • Part 10 - Product strategy
  • Part 11 - Long-term issues
  • Part 12 - Action plan
  • Appendices
  • Directory

This report is now availalable to members of our Telco 2.0 Research Executive Briefing Service. Below is an introductory extract and list of contents from this strategy Report that can be downloaded in full in PDF format by members of the executive Briefing Service here.  To order or find out more please email , call +44 (0) 207 247 5003.