Posted by: Tom Nolle
Mobile, Wireless broadband
AT&T has semi-affirmed an open wireless strategy, not going as far as Verizon but clearly going far enough to show that it feels the pressure. The company notes that GSM phones are compatible across networks through a SIM card, which offers some handset portability, but falls short of the complete open-if-certified model Verizon plans. We believe the AT&T comments reflect the reality that the mobile walled garden was breaking down under pressure from regulators, Google saw that and launched Android and OHA, and the operators are now responding, but more to the regulators than to Google. This is important because it likely means the regulatory pace of opening wireless will accelerate in 2008 given relative lack of operator pressure. The comments came as AT&T issued an upbeat forecast for the coming year.