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Mobile Operator Strategy and implications for the ecosystemAlmost all major mobile operators are public companies who have to answer to theshareholders every quarter. They are measured by the revenue they generate eachquarter and the potential to generate more revenues in the future with existing and newcustomers, and existing and new services. Thus, like other publicly-traded companies,they have to do a delicate dance of managing a declining business while investing infuture growth. We believe that the operator strategies worldwide will be drivenprimarily by the key constructs illustrated in figure 14 and described below:Delay the declineBoth operators who are experiencing declines today and those who are approaching thegrowth curve peaks have to figure out strategies to delay the decline of their voice andmessaging curves. This can be achieved by a number of key initiatives that involve a mixof business models, consumer loyalty, integration of new technologies to reduce churn,and embracing OTT/VAS services.Extend the peakFor operators in India and China, who have yet to hit the peaks of their voice andmessaging curves, the strategy is going to be driven by strategies similar to the onesdiscussed in the section above. For the access curve, where most operators are still goingto be riding the growth for the next several years, strategies will be driven bytechnologies and business models that help manage the cost per bit to enhance themargins per bit. Operators who are able to manage their margins better will havesignificant competitive advantage. The reason Sprint is still able to offer unlimited dataon iPhone and Android devices is because their margins/bit are better than theircompetitors.10 A number of operators like Rogers, Vodafone and Verizon have launcheddata share plans that allow consumers to bundle multiple device per plan. This willencourage users to become data users across multiple devices. This form of data pricingand bundling will help extend the access curve peak in all markets.Invest in the 4th curveAs we mentioned earlier in the paper, how operators react to the opportunity of the 4thcurve and how they decide to ride this next wave will write their destiny. Depending onhow they choose or are able to invest and compete will define what they will become in5-10 years. Given that the 4th curve is not a singular curve but a combination of severalmini-curves that have their own profile, growth characteristics, competitive dynamics,and opportunity landscape, operators will have to manage the 4th curve like aninvestment professional would manage an investment portfolio or fund – diversify toreduce risk and extend growth.10 Part of the appeal is also in the simplicity of the message which helps in managing the churn.