Summary:

ContentSutra’s coverage of the Infor-Media’s two-day Value Added Services Conference in Mumbai, continues… Our contributor Prashant Sethi…

ContentSutra’s coverage of the Infor-Media‘s two-day Value Added Services Conference in Mumbai, continues… Our contributor Prashant Sethi writes from the event venue:
Yee Kou Tiong, Manager-Converged Communication, Intel Semi-conductor Ltd-Asia Pacific
This is what he spoke: Some five years ago a friend of mine was visiting Japan. One morning as he was strolling around a garden, he saw a man standing with an umbrella and two suitcases and constantly looking at his watch. As my friend moved towards him, he noticed that the man was watching TV on his watch, soon to my friend’s amazement the man started checking mails on his watch. My friend approached the Japanese guy and asked him to sell this wonder product to him. A huge sum of money was demanded by the Japanese guy, which was promptly paid by my friend.
The watch was handed over to my friend, whose joy knew no bound on owning this great invention. As my friend was admiring his new wonder watch the Japanese guy handed him the umbrella and the two suitcases. My friend got confused as to why was the Japanese guy giving him all his belongings when he had only bought the watch. When asked about it to the Japanese guy, he explained that the umbrella was the antenna for the watch and the suitcases were its battery.
This story besides being funny also brings fundamental questions to board. The idea of improving consumer experience, to put it into different words-information should be available when wanted.
What is it that the consumer is looking for? Content anytime, anywhere, easy to use applications, presence and low cost. Some of the key reasons for consumer to spend are – connectivity, mobility/ productivity (e.g. Blackberry), entertainment is another big area followed by information and commerce convenience.
As a provider we have to focus on the types of VAS needed and strive towards improving ARPU, retaining customers and staying relevant. As it has been noticed that there is no loyalty of a customer for the provider and to find content useful to them, they will switch provider. Keeping this in mind, innovation is expected in service, as new and better services drive revenue.
VAS are already becoming more and more consumer relevant and innovative, like the mobile healthcare which combines SMS, web services and location based services to link patients and doctors. The other example is voice portals. One service that has really caught attention is the ‘husband finder’. In general trends, technology is shifting to EOIP and design is shifting to maximize re-use and core competency.

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