Its my pleasure to introduce you to the emerging world of m-commerce and how your company can take a competitive edge by harnessing this technology towards effective information management. The industry has already seen a huge shift towards increasing end user value by enabling commercial transactions such as comparison shopping and directory services via handheld devices. Mobile phones and such devices are becoming so ubiquitous and technologically powerful that in the near future, all transactions that was possible via internet will be made available via these devices. “Sprint-Nextel is moving forward to build nation’s first WiMax broadband wireless network while IEEE is working on building the 802.11n broadband wireless networking standards by 2008” – (Burger A.K., 2007, January 31). Even though there has been an uncertainty in the m-commerce field, especially the standardization area, these developments has proven to be a wake up call for every wireless provider to take a strategic action.
One of the most successful m-commerce applications of the future will be mobile gaming and multimedia entertainment. There will be possible cross sector alliances between major companies in the mobile, television, cable, music and movie industry. Other promising products and services include m-valets (used for one click payment via handheld devices), music and ring tone downloads, streaming media, purchase of movie/concert tickets, GPS enabled travel/tourism guides, pushed promotions, vending machine purchases etc. There have been a variety of handheld devices in the market that supports different file/coding/compression formats, and this makes it difficult to arrive at a uniform standard.
Another hurdle is the lack of knowledge/coordination between the banks and carriers to work out agreeable m-commerce payment model. Digital distribution rights management (DRM) continues to be one of the major forces of darkness in the full-fledged use of multimedia based m-commerce. DRM rules and regulations should be relaxed to suite the m-commerce model data/voice streams and the user interfaces. Telecom carriers, who are challenged by internet-based wireless technology, continue to resist and restrict opening of their network to third party content. Awareness needs to be created among the carriers about the potential of the new technology to generate revenues via merchant commissions. Establishing a universal micro-payment model is necessary which can direct the m-commerce usage to the existing phone bills.
High reliance on Internet is another negative factor that affects wide usage of m-commerce. Instead of counting on number of purchases made from the hand-held device, methods needs to be devised that leverages the existing Internet medium to complete the transaction via WAP. RF consulting has proven record of expertise in establishing m-commerce support in wireless networks, as well as designing and implementing m-commerce applications and standards, and we are pleased to work on the constraints that your company is facing to emerge as a leader in providing m-commerce based solutions.
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