4G, WiFi and Roaming – Three Things That Should All Be ‘Free’?

Gary Barton
Gary Barton

Summary Bullets:

  • Premiums for mobile roaming and 4G will prevent business users from taking full advantage of other paid-for services, such as hosted applications and remote access services.
  • Business customers should begin to demand voice over WiFi as a standard part of their mobility solutions.

In a recent statement from Neelie Kroes, the vice president for the digital agenda in the European Commission, she spoke of her “dream” to see a “true, integrated single market.”  Kroes went on to add that “in such a market, there is no roaming.”  The fine details are a long way from being agreed upon, but this statement is a clear indication that the EU intends to go beyond capping mobile roaming fees within the EU and actually prohibit them altogether.  The devil is always in the details with such legislation and business customers will undoubtedly hold suspicions that they will end up paying for roaming one way or another.  There is no such thing as a free lunch and we all appreciate that MNOs have to make a profit.  Vodafone UK, for example, has announced that it is investing GBP 900 million in rolling out 4G and upgrading backhaul and network infrastructure to cope with the rollout.  As this is the investment required for only one European country, the task of convincing operators that it is in their interest not to set too high a price for 4G, and similarly roaming, might seem daunting. Continue reading “4G, WiFi and Roaming – Three Things That Should All Be ‘Free’?”