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A Rose By Any Other Name

Posted on Monday 5 April 2004

Here’s a laugh via RDSL Europe:

Three of the country’s four major mobile network operators are rejecting the use of the term ‘UMTS’ in future communications, arguing that this abbreviation for Universal Mobile Telecommunications System has generated too much bad publicity in the past. T-Mobile suggests the use of the term Mobile Multimedia for the technology; while O2 and E-Plus have also announced plans to drop use of the term UMTS. Only Vodafone believes it is too late to rename UMTS.

Wait. Didn’t the operators want all the publicity they got when they touted UMTS as the Second Coming?

And while we’re on the subject of UMTS, how about the Dow Jones story “Video Calling Takes Back Seat In 3G Push”?

[S]igns are appearing that the futuristic appeal of video calling – a concept only imagined in science fiction until recently – isn’t the killer application many telecom companies had hoped. Video calling, some say, is far too subjective to become a mass market service.

“Fixed-line and Web video messaging hasn’t taken off and I think that is because of a fundamental human characteristic – very few people feel comfortable in front of a camera,” Hugh Griffiths, mmO2’s head of portals, told Dow Jones Newswires. “For video messaging to be a killer application, it would require a fundamental change in human behavior.”

The skeptics may be right. Research company Yankee Group said in a note, “There is no great demand for video services among end users.”

Some of us said so years ago.


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