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Wireless Windfall: Let’s Put That Money to Work

The AWS-3 auctions have raised more than $35 billion to date. Even after FirstNet and other earmarks have been fully funded, the government will have $25 billion plus that presently is slated to disappear into a Black Hole, AKA the Dept. of Treasury, toward the deficit. Lowenstein argues that there are some important and innovative ways those funds could be utilized.

Read more...



Grocery Shopping Is an Area Ripe for Mobile Innovation

Lowenstein contends that among our many daily experiences, the grocery shopping experience has been barely touched by the benefits of mobile technology. In this column, he lays out the state of the market and offers several suggestions for what grocery retailers can do.

Read more...

 

 


 

Recent Opinion Pieces

and

Mark Lowenstein's monthly opinion columns for Fierce Wireless

E-Book on Wi-Fi First:

You've all seen my numerous posts on both the pivotal role of Wi-Fi in the mobile revolution, and the frank appraisal of what needs to happen in order for Wi-Fi to be a viable substitute for or complement to cellular use for certain types of users and contexts. There's been a lot of progress on this of late. I've written a Foreword to a new book on Wi-Fi First by Alan Berrey, which can be downloaded here

fiercewireless
December 2014:
Grocery Shopping Is an Area Ripe for Mobile Innovation

Lowenstein contends that among our many daily experiences, the grocery shopping experience has been barely touched by the benefits of mobile technology. In this column, he lays out the state of the market and offers several suggestions for what grocery retailers can do. Read more...

fiercewireless
November 2014:
Lowenstein’s Comments on Apple Pay

With Apple Pay, Apple has created the user experience that will usher in broader acceptance of mobile payments. But there’s still lots of work to be done before you can leave your wallet at home. Read the Full Column

Lens
November 2014:
Lowenstein’s Views on Wi-Fi Calling and VoLTE

This issue is devoted to my thoughts on three 'new' services that could change the landscape of how we use mobile: Apple Pay, Wi-Fi Calling, and Voice over LTE (VoLTE). Read the latest Lens

fiercewireless
September 2014:
Opportunities for the FCC To Fast-Track Broadband, Competition

There have been three broad themes to the FCC under Chairman Tom Wheeler, reinforced in his remarks at the recent CTIA trade show: more competition, more spectrum, and an open, non-discriminatory Internet. I believe there are some opportunities for the FCC to fast-track certain items that add more mobile broadband capacity and expand consumer choice. Read the Column

fiercewireless
August 2014:
Lowenstein’s Memo to New Sprint CEO: How to Turn Things Around

Sprint’s new CEO, Marcelo Claure, has a significant challenge ahead: Organic subscriber growth has plateaued; the industry is already highly competitive; Sprint's network continues to trail the competition; and T-Mobile has picked off some of the lower hanging fruit of good ideas and potential differentiators, as the industry underdog, over the past 18 months. And, no other country has four facilities-based wireless operators who are all viable and profitable. With that background, here are some thoughts for Sprint's new CEO.

Lens
July 2014:
Ten Everyday Tech Things That Could Be Better

How many times a day, when encountering various tech-related challenges/problems/annoyances, do you think to yourself, “why is this so hard”, or “why hasn’t someone solved this?” Instead of speculating about the “next big thing”, this Lens is devoted to pointing out some smaller issues that, more effectively addressed, would make things better for a lot of folks. So here’s my list of Ten Everyday Tech Things That Could Be Better.

fiercewireless
July 2014:
10 'Uncarrier' offerings I'd like to see…

T-Mobile cleverly coined the term "uncarrier" to market its maverick moves, changing the game in several aspects of mobile services. What are some other “Uncarrier” moves I’d like to see from mobile operators? Read the Column

fiercewireless
June 2014:
Wi-Fi First: What Still Needs to Happen

With the continued growth in demand for data and proliferation of private and public Wi-Fi hotspots, the idea of a 'Wi-Fi First' wireless service has become a favorite discussion topic. It is technically possible to offer a Wi-First service. However, I think there is a long way to go before Wi-First can be considered as a viable, mainstream alternative to a cellular plan. Read More

Lens
June 2014:
Five Reasons Why Sprint-TMO Would be Good for Competition

Regulators' main argument is that further consolidation in the wireless industry would be bad for competition. I believe the opposite. My view is that a combination of Sprint and T-Mobile would be better for competition in connectivity, and in the long run, better for consumers. Read More

fiercewireless
May 2014:
Government: We Need You

In sharp contrast to the rest of Washington, where little of substance is getting done, Tom Wheeler's FCC is actively engaged on many important fronts. And that's a good thing. This is a critical time in the communications and digital media industries. I'm not arguing for a spate of new regulations, but we do need the public sector to be proactively engaged and involved, in two respects. Read More

fiercewireless
March 2014:
And The Next Big Thing Is…?

Lowenstein argues that with respect to game-changing innovation, mobile is in a bit of a "harvesting", or "pause" period. Read More

Lens
March 2014:
Review: Comcast Cloud DVR Service

Cloud DVR is an important element of the evolution of TV Everywhere. Comcast has launched Cloud DVR in Boston. My conclusion: not yet ready for prime time. Read More

fiercewireless
February 2014:
Memo to FCC: If Comcast, then Sprint?

Lowenstein argues that if the FCC takes a serious look at the Comcast-TWC deal, then Sprint-TMO also merits consideration. Read More

Lens
February 2014:
Wireless Pricing Moves: The Broader Context

By now, you've read the news and some analysis of the Verizon "More Everything" announcement. I'd like to look at all the recent wireless pricing activity from a broader context. Let's get one thing straight: we are not in the middle of a "wireless price war" in the United States. Read More

fiercewireless
January 2014:
A 2014 "To Do List" for Key Wireless Players

It is now time to turn to the serious business of 2014. Since we all like to start the year with resolutions, goals, and objectives, here's my 2014 "To Do" for some of the wireless industry's key players. Read More

fiercewireless
November 2013:
Ten Problems Mobile Can Help Solve

Lowenstein believes we have entered an exciting new phase, where the unique combination of smartphone capabilities, plus their ubiquity and near constant presence, are enabling new categories of applications and services. Here's his take on some major new areas of value creation for mobile. Read here

fiercewireless
October 2013:
Thinking Beyond the Bars

How often does this happen to you: Your phone is displaying five bars of 4G or four bars of Wi-Fi, but the data speeds are very slow. In an era of crowd-sourced data and real-time information about so many things in our daily lives, it's time for a better real-time view of the quality of a mobile data connection. Read here

Lens
September 2013:
Part 2: Microsoft-Nokia Deal: Six Things Microsoft Needs to Do

My analysis of why Microsoft acquired Nokia and thoughts on six things Microsoft should do to become more relevant in mobile. Read More....

Lens
September 2013:
Part 1: Implications of the Verizon-Vodafone deal

My thoughts on the Verizon-Vodafone deal -- why now, its impact on the market, and what it means for the future of Verizon. Read More....

fiercewireless
August 2013:
Wearables: Hip or Hype?

Will wearables continue along their current trajectory--distinct, standalone products aimed at particular market segments--or become the breakout gadget or concept that has broad market appeal, either as a new product category (like the smartphone or tablet), or function as an important companion to the existing products in our digital lives? Read more...

fiercewireless
July 2013:
Smartphone Ennui -- And What To Do About It

Smartphone sales growth in developed economies is leveling off. It's getting harder to make a truly breakout device. What are some possible ways to reinvigorate the smartphone market? Read my latest opinion column in Fierce Wireless.

Lens
July 2013:
Lowenstein's Take on T-Mobile's New Plans

T-Mobile made several announcements this week to further its "un-carrier strategy": extending family plans to non-credit subscribers, and offering Jump, an innovative plan for those who want to switch their phones more often. Read More....

Lens
June 2013:
What's Next for Sprint and DISH?

Among the wave of M&A that has swept the wireless industry in recent years, I believe Dish-Sprint offers the most intriguing possibilities for innovative service and business models. The combination of assets could help redefine what broadband and video delivery services look like, over the next five years. Read More....

fiercewireless
June 2013:
WiFi Will Be a Bigger Part of Mobile Future.

WiFi is becoming a much larger part of the overall connectivity framework. Continued improvement in WiFi capabilities (speed, range, etc.) and the expansion of indoor and outdoor hotspots mean greater intermingling of cellular and WiFi networks. Broadband companies, such as cablecos, might take greater “connectivity” share. For wireless operators, WiFi is a "frenemy". Read More....

Lens
June 2013:
My Experience with Aereo

As many of you know, I do a lot of work in the area of disruptive technologies and business models. So I thought I'd share a few thoughts on my experience with Aereo, a new service that allows subscribers to view live broadcast television, over the Internet, on their TV or any mobile device, using a remote antenna, without subscribing to cable. Read More....

fiercewireless
May 2013:
A Humorous Look at The Upcoming CTIA Show.

Known for his periodic "tele-comedy" columns, Mark takes a humorous look at the upcoming CTIA Show in Las Vegas. Read More....

Lens
May 2013:
The Emergence of BYOP

BYOD is a big buzzword in wireless. But I think the term is a bit of a misnomer. What we're really seeing is the emergence of the "Bring Your Own Plan (BYOP)" era in wireless. The catalyst, really, is the steady migration to a structure where voice and text are unlimited, and subscribers pay for a bucket of GB. Data is the new currency. Read More....

fiercewireless
April 2013:
Dish-Sprint Could User in New Broadband, Content Era

Among the wave of M&A that has swept the wireless industry in recent years, I believe Dish-Sprint offers the most intriguing possibilities for innovative service and business models. The combination of assets could help redefine what broadband and video delivery services look like, over the next five years. Read More....

fiercewireless
March 2013:
Mobile Payments: E-ZPass vs. Parking Meters.

It is mid-2013, and we are nowhere near where we thought we would be with mobile payments in North America. There's huge velocity in the area, but mobile payments have impacted relatively few consumers' lives to this point. To explain why mobile payments haven't taken off, I'd like to use the analogy of E-ZPass vs. parking meters. Read More....

fiercewireless
March 2013:
Will Wireless Compete with Broadband?

A top strategic question is whether mobile could possibly compete with fixed broadband. My views on this have evolved over the past six months -- the technology roadmap, strategic considerations, and public policy are pointing to the increased viability of mobile being a broadband alternative. Read More....

fiercewireless
January 2013:
Rethinking Business Models for Mobile and Content

The theme of my 2013 "predictions" piece was that this is going to be a year of "disruption" across many elements of the value chain. I'd like to delve a little deeper into a discussion of business models and pricing, where I think we will see both disruption to prevailing structures, and experimentation around new forms of monetization. I see this happening in many sectors of the mobile space: operator pricing, video over mobile, "content everywhere," and applications. Read More....


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Recent Quotes


Lowenstein Comments on AWS-3 Auction

Lowenstein comments in Le Monde article about Iliad investment in Sprint

ComputerWorld
T-Mobile Jumps! to quick phone upgrades

CIO
Got that New-Phone Itch? Jump, Says T-Mobile

ZDNet
Lowenstein Fireside Chat with
T-Mobile CMO


Interview on Sprint-SoftBank Deal
in Wall Street Journal Germany

NECN
Studio Interview on iPhone 5 for NECN's This Week in Business

NECN
New England Cable News interview on Apple-Samsung Verdict

PR Newswire
Growth of Prepaid

NECN
New England Cable News interview on Share Everything


Mobile Industry Faces Spectrum, Deal ParalysisReuters
U.S. mobile industry faces spectrum, deal paralysis

xconomy

Lowenstein featured as Xconomist of the Week


Mobile Apps Moving Into the Office

PC World
LTE Spectrum: How Much Do The Carriers Have?

Investors Business Daily
Verizon, Rivals Crave Airwaves For 4G Wireless Push

Nuance’s Vlingo Purchase Seen As Survival Move Against Apple, Google

AT&T and T-Mobile USA: The Fat Lady Sang

Investors Business Daily
Telecoms, Startups Fight Card Firms On Mobile Payments


Google works on phone payment technology

Fortune Magazine
Can Nokia and Microsoft win in the workplace?


Battery Life Limits Hobble 4G Smartphones

Fortune Magazine
Why the Verizon 'dream phone' matters

Investors Business Daily
Verizon Confirms Arrival to iPhone Party


Rethinking the iPhone Threat to AT&T

Wall Street Journal
Venture Capital Dispatch

LA Times
VoIP basics: How to make free phone calls via the Internet

CBS
iPhone 4: Risks and Rewards of an AT&T Upgrade

Investors Business Daily
Comments on iPad security breach

Wireless Week
Lowenstein comments on FCC's Broadband Plan

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