What I Want To See in an MVNO
I was reading Andy’s post about how MVNOs aren’t growing and it occurred to me that there is a market segment nobody has covered in the MVNO market space, or at least not that I’ve seen. That, my friends, is raw connectivity. Your typical Mobile Virtual Network Operator partners with a single “host” carrier. This, by definition, limits connectivity. The fact that in the USA we have competing standards is another thing that limits connectivity.
What I would like to see is an MVNO that partners with every carrier, or at least every carrier that uses a specific technology. The phone could utilize whatever network is available or strongest. Voice, data, SMS, everything “just works.” It may not be the fastest connection in the world, depending on the network in question, but you have less to worry about in terms of coverage. If someone has built out service there, then your phone works.
I would like to see someone develop a multi-mode GSM/CDMA handset specifically for this purpose. Granted it would be optimized for voice (though it could certainly do data), but let’s face it: most people don’t use data services on their phone, nor do they care. They just want their phone to work and would be willing to pay decent money for the privilege.
Is this a pipe dream, or is this kind of arrangement realistic? Does anyone else want this kind of MVNO? Am I missing some important detail? Leave a comment and let me know.