Showing posts from September, 2009

Relative vs Absolute

People tend to misjudge when to think in relative terms and when to think in absolute terms.

Tough times ahead for US Wireless Carriers?

~93% of US population has a cellphone. The US wireless market is getting saturated (in terms of new subscribers). To continue the revenue growth, the Wireless Carriers (WC) have seen in the last few years, the WC will have to find new ways since what was a growth driver-new subscribers- in the past is no longer there. Let's look at a few other reasons and understand why I think that the WC may have tough times ahead of them. 1. Decline in Voice Revenue: WC make most of their money from voice calls. The revenue from voice (per user) has declined in the last few quarters and will continue to decline in the coming years. The product is mature and there are not many ways to differentiate it. There is increased pricing pressure from low-cost carriers like Metro PCS and MVNOs (Mobile Virtual Network Operators) like Tracfone. A customer can easily get an unlimited voice minutes (and SMS, and some amount of data) service plan from these low cost carriers for $50 or less with no contract.

Like vs Necessary

People tend to do what they like rather than what is necessary.

Latest Stats from the Wireless World

I attended Mobilize 2009 yesterday. It was an interesting conference and many of the big names in the wireless industry were present. The main trends highlighted at the conference were: Mobile broadband and Smart Phones represent a big opportunity Wireless carriers are updating their networks to handle the mobile data demand which was jump-started with iPhone More Android phones will be launched in the coming months The Mobile Application market will continue to grow Companies are trying to figure out how to make Mobile Advertising work Following are a few stats which were mentioned during the presentations: There will be 1 Billion mobile broadband subscribers by 2013 100k websites are created every 24 hours There are 5 Billion websites today There are 1.6B Internet users today and 98% primarily access it via the PC There are 1.3B fixed/wireline phone lines in the world 210B emails are sent every 24 hours 1B searches are done on Google every day 1B pictures are

What are Complex Systems?

Complex Systems consist of diverse, interdependent, connected, adapting entities. For example, financial markets have diverse banks which are connected and interdependent and they adapt to risk and to each other. Complex Systems (CX) are: 1. Unpredictable 2. Produce large events (wars) 3. Robust (how ecosystems withstand loss of species) 4. Produce bottom-up emergent phenomenon (how a city operates) 5. Produce Novelty/Innovation CX are not Normal i.e. they don't follow the Normal Distribution bell curve . However, they do follow the Power Law . CX exist between order and chaos. It is important to understand CX because the world is becoming more and more complex. It is : 1. More diverse because of more people and species 2. More interdependent because of trade 3. More Connected because of transportation and the Internet 4. More Adapt because of frequent changes in technologies There is a difference in Complex and Complicated. Complicated Systems don't adapt. Emergence happens w

OPEN Brand

I just finished reading OPEN brand which is a book on branding in the age of the Internet. The book offers a lot of common sense using uncommon words. OPEN is an acronym for On-demand, Personal, Engaging, and Networked. The other meaning of OPEN is that companies should open their brands to customers and make them part of the brands. The basic idea of the book is that companies should listen to the customers and use the web and the mobile phones to engage the customers with the brand i.e. focus on Pull Marketing . The companies will have to change how they market to customers now that the customers are connected to each other and can make their voices heard on the web. For a more detailed summary of the book see


The book Outliers by Malcom Gladwell proves with various interesting stories that people become successful by working hard and by being at the right place at the right time. One can increase ones chances of being at the right place at the right time by never stop trying. Your family, society, culture, the time and place of your birth, etc. are all part of being at the right place at the right time.

Warren Buffett and the Business of Life

I just finished listening to an audio book - The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life . It is a biography of Warren Buffet who is one of my heroes . The audio book is 37 hour long and is very addictive. I could not stop listening to the audio book until it was finished. Buffett is an extraordinary human being. One learns a lot from his biography. However, since I usually don't listen to audio books, I don't remember most of what I heard:-) after being in awe for 37 hours. Following are a few random things I remember: 1. Buffett never acquired a company with a hostile takeover. 2. One should always have "margin of safety" when making investments. What that means is that one should not make investments where there is a risk of losing money if things don't go according to the plan. 3. It is not a good idea to be on company boards where one doesn't have any influence on the CEO. 4. Praise the individual and criticize the category. Buffett followed Da