Entertainment as a Platform for More-than-Voice Services
16 Pages Posted: 14 Aug 2013
Date Written: October 2012
Mobile phones are being used to improve one’s economic situation by increasing the efficiency of day-to-day decision making by reducing transaction costs. At the same time, entertainment services on mobile phones, while not bringing any productive value to the user, are quite popular. However the general perception is that economic-related services are much less popular than entertainment-related services. If that is the case and if entertainment platforms could be used to push utilitarian (used to mean economic-related) services then it might be possible to use mobile phones to further improve livelihood outcomes of users.
This paper considers those who use utilitarian services and those who do not in order to assess if the drivers of such use are significantly different from each other. The thinking is that if they are not significantly different, it would be possible to leverage entertainment platforms to offer more-than-voice services including utilitarian services.
Considering a large sample at the bottom of the pyramid in five emerging Asian countries the findings dampen the enthusiasm that it is possible, without any additional appeal, to use entertainment platforms to push utilitarian type services via mobile phones. In light of this finding, marketing strategists and policy makers as well as application developers would need to think again about how to leverage the fairly extensive use of entertainment platforms to push economically beneficial services.
Keywords: mobile telecommunication, BOP, mobile phone, more-than-voice, value-added-services
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