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The 'service enabler' role holds the greatest mobile content potential for operators

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In the mobile media and entertainment (MME) market, the 'service enabler' role appears to hold greater revenue potential for mobile network operators than the role of on portal content service provider, according to a new report published by Analysys Mason.

"Mobile network operators have focused on becoming successful content service providers during the past five to six years to avoid being marginalised as mere 'bit pipe' providers," said Yanli Suo-Saunders, lead author of the report. "However, the trend towards unrestricted mobile Internet access, as well as the increasing number of online brands and handset vendors that are entering the mobile market, will pose a significant competitive threat to operators' portal businesses."

"Mobile operators are best placed to become service enablers in the content value chain by exploiting their unique assets, which focus on transmission, billing and consumer insight," added Mike Grant, co-author of the report. "These assets are essential to the success of content providers in the MME market, and the 'service enabler' revenue streams (including traffic, billing and advertising revenue) appear to be the most sustainable for mobile network operators in the long term."

Key findings from the new report include:

  • The off-portal market accounts for the majority of MME revenue in many Western European countries, and is expected to continue to grow as more major mobile operators adopt flat-rate data plans and an open approach to mobile Internet access.
  • Handset vendors and established online brands are becoming increasingly significant players in the MME value chain, and pose a competitive threat to mobile operators own-branded content offerings.
  • Mobile operators will need to closely examine their core assets and identify potential areas for further investment in order to maximise their revenue potential from acting as service enablers.

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Tags: mobile internet  billing