The Reconfiguration of Mobile Service Provision: Towards Platform Business Models

27 Pages Posted: 23 Jan 2009

See all articles by Pieter Ballon

Pieter Ballon

iMinds-SMIT, VUB

Nils Walravens

Vrije Universiteit Brussel, imec-SMIT

Antonietta Spedalieri

Telefónica Investigación y Desarrollo

Claudio Venezia

Telecom Italia - Telecom Italia - Rome

Date Written: September 18, 2008

Abstract

This paper introduces and analyses four potential business models for emerging mobile service platforms. For each model, a real-life case is described and briefly analyzed. It is found that platform strategies - focused on the control of core assets on the one hand, and on complementarity and open interfaces on the other hand -, permeate the models introduced by the stakeholders vying for dominance in this market. In particular, these strategies and models differ strongly according to the specific set-up and control of crucial, 'gatekeeping' roles.

Current dominant stakeholders in the mobile market, i.e. mobile network operators, are confronted with limitations when trying to attract users and service developers to their platform due to a walled garden approach, and are seeking ways to attract larger constituencies. Emergent platform business models championed by other types of actors focus on exposing capabilities and on offering service enablers in a more open manner, while migrating control over some, or all, of the gatekeeping roles away from the operator. Building on some of the strengths of these models, a potential evolution of the current telco-centric model towards a more balanced platform model is outlined.

Keywords: Mobile service provision, Business models, Platforms

Suggested Citation

Ballon, Pieter and Walravens, Nils and Spedalieri, Antonietta and Venezia, Claudio, The Reconfiguration of Mobile Service Provision: Towards Platform Business Models (September 18, 2008). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1331549 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1331549

Pieter Ballon (Contact Author)

iMinds-SMIT, VUB ( email )

Pleinlaan 9
Brussels, Brabant 1050
Belgium

Nils Walravens

Vrije Universiteit Brussel, imec-SMIT ( email )

Pleinlaan 9
Brussels, 1050
Belgium

Antonietta Spedalieri

Telefónica Investigación y Desarrollo ( email )

Spain

Claudio Venezia

Telecom Italia - Telecom Italia - Rome ( email )

Corso d'Italia 41
Rome, 00198
Italy

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