INSIDE MOBILE: Open Letter to the Wireless Industry-How to Help the Economy Recover

Investing in mobile and wireless communications in these difficult economic times will help you generate new business, whether you are a wireless operator, large enterprise or small business. Knowledge Center mobile and wireless analyst J. Gerry Purdy explains why every company, including wireless operators, large and small businesses, and individual service professionals should be investing in mobile and wireless technology right now.


The economy is, overall, just terrible. It's like watching a horror movie every night on the evening news. But there are some sectors that are still doing well, wireless being one of them. That's because wireless is no longer just an option but, instead, a necessity. Companies-including wireless cellular operators-should be investing in wireless services during these difficult economic times.

Here's what I think each industry sector should do-from wireless cellular operators to large enterprises, all the way down to small businesses and individual service professionals. First, let me start with wireless cellular operators.

This is an Open Letter to the CEOs of all wireless cellular operators in the United States, including AT&T Wireless, Verizon Wireless, Sprint, T-Mobile and Metro PCS:

These are difficult economic times. Fortunately, the wireless industry is weathering the storm better than many other industries. I would like to call on the wireless industry to do their fair part to help all those who are in a tough economic bind, either because they lost their job or home (or, horrors, both).

If these people already have a wireless plan, I'd recommend the wireless operator provide free service to such unfortunate people for up to a year, or until such time that they get employed. Put protections in place so that people don't take advantage of the program. And, if they don't have a phone, let them get basic cellular service while unemployed that converts to a paid plan when they get a new job.

I hope the CTIA and other trade organizations will support such a program. It's a good idea because:

1. It's altruistic. It helps the wireless industry get more subscribers and keep those that have a temporary problem.

2. It would generate lifetime customer loyalty. The individual will likely be very thankful and want to stay with the wireless operator.

3. It could be promoted as a differentiator (if it's not picked up by every operator).

4. It could generate goodwill for the industry.

That's the end of my Open Letter to the CEOs of all wireless cellular operators in the United States. Now, let's address the other parts of the economy, starting with large enterprises.