More than a decade ago when mobile infrastructure companies, service providers, and device makers started working on Location Based Services (LBS), analysts predicted LBS as "the next big thing” in the mobile services market. Operators had expected to increase their average revenue per user (ARPU) by deploying location services. Network infrastructure vendors made significant investments on increasing the accuracy of a user’s location using various technologies like GPS, AGPS, and cell-IDs. And, application vendors and device makers were pretty excited about the possibilities of LBS. But, "the next big thing” never happened.

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I recently read an excerpt from a Gartner report that the number of technicians with wireless access to a formal packaged field service management (FSM) solution in large enterprises will increase from 25 percent in 2010 to 50 percent by 2012. This got me thinking about workforce management systems in general, and its lower-rung place on the totem pole of telecom spending.

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Every now and then, the business world presents us with a lab experiment that we can observe in realtime. Netflix's announcement that it is splitting off its DVD-by-mail business from its streaming business is just such an experiment. The DVD business will now go by the name Qwikster, and the streaming business will stay under the Netflix brand. It is Clayton Christensen's innovator's dilemma incarnate, and Netflix is very publicly trying to solve it. Like its 60% price increase did earlier this year, this move is understandably causing consternation amongst some customers. It's a bold move, one that will cost them in the near term, but Netflix I'm sure has done the calculus and is looking at the endgame 5-10 years out, not 5-10 months.

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As you probably will have noticed, we recently updated our strategic positioning and branding, introducing the Aricent Group as a provider of “innovation services for the connected world.” The Aricent Group name now serves as the new corporate brand for the company, with product innovation, design, and related engineering offerings marketed under the frog brand, and R&D engineering and carrier services marketed under the Aricent brand. The brands will each maintain their own client base and continue to collaborate in situations where clients can benefit from the Aricent Group's full breadth of capabilities.

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