ACCORDING to Vodafone, the 3G revolution has arrived and is bigger than Ben Hur, sliced bread and Texas.
While that may or may not prove to be the case the company is promising channel benefits within the year.
Although much of the content is aimed at the youth market, such as music downloads and mobile TV, the company is also heavily focused on business users and is promoting the benefits of its data cards and live video calls.
To coincide with the launch, Vodafone has halved the cost of data through its Mobile Connect cards with 25MB at $79 and 500MB at $99.
Phil Patel, director business markets, says this gives businesses an alternative to wi-fi in the 19 connected areas in New Zealand.
“The coverage includes all CBD and industrial areas and the network will expand as time goes on and with the data rates on offer I expect this to appeal to the small to medium business sector as much as corporates,” he says.
Patel says that while the launch marks a critical milestone it’s just the start of things to come.
“People underestimate how mainstream 3G is going to become. Now we have the foundation we can start to provide application services and really look at IT wireless productivity.”
And that’s where Vodafone will be looking to the channel to play its part.
Patel says that within the next year his company will be actively targeting resellers and promises huge opportunities in terms of new business and increased margins.
“Potentially resellers can earn more connecting a phone than providing a server.”
IDC telecommunications analyst Chris Loh says that while he expects to see businesses commit serious resources to enterprise mobility in the next few years, it is anticipated that will be in the area of converged devices.
“3G is perceived as a premium service but in Australia it looks as though it’s mainly being used by service providers to reduce costs, for instance bucket plans for calling,” he says.
Loh doesn’t expect the same to happen here as there isn’t the competitive market.