Dealing with Google

18 Nov 2008

Research firm Gartner has offered advice for telcos on coping with Google's growing influence on the sector.

Not because telecom operators are necessarily in Google's crosshairs, but "because it finds their business process to be an impediment to innovation and change," Gartner says.

Maybe. Telcos might consider Gartner's suggestions as bordering on the bleeding obvious: "Carriers should selectively partner with Google rather than trying to compete."

But Gartner does us a service by pointing out all the ways in which Google has impacted on telecom. It's more than you'd think:

  • The opening of the 700MHz range
  • Android and the Open Handset Alliance
  • Lobbying for network neutrality
  • Aggressive mapping strategy
  • "White space" spectrum
  • Cloud and SaaS offerings

Not to mention actually taking a stake in a trans-Pacific cable.

Carriers should examine carefully the approach of a serial innovator like Google - if for no other reason than because it forces them to think differently about their own business.

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