January 14, 2016 — This is shaping up to be an interesting year. There is no shortage of prognostications from a multitude of individuals, both respected, and…well, not so much.
Perhaps one of the most intriguing, to me, comes from T-Mobile’s “delusional” (as his critics like to call him) CEO, John Legere. Whether he is delusional or not is subjective but what I find a bit strange is his positioning T-Mobile as the “un-carrier.”
Exactly what that means is a mystery to me. In his own words, he boasts, “Through the first 33 months of this revolution T-Mobile has shown that doing things differently works! We’ve led this industry in new customers and revenue growth, won 100 percent of new postpaid phone customers, delivered record-low churn, ranked number one in J.D. Power customer care, and have, basically, pulled even with Verizon on LTE coverage, now reaching 304 million people with the nation’s fastest LTE network.”
Hmmm…sure sounds like a carrier to me. What part of that is un-carrier? That sounds remarkably like what the other “carriers” are saying, in one form or another.
Sometimes it’s what isn’t said that speaks louder than the words. Mr. Legere made no mention of small cells, Wi-Fi, streaming media, NFV, SDN, VoLTE, LTE-U, LAA, 5G or any of the other emerging and bleeding-edge technologies. So what I hear is business as usual, with nothing more than a renewed focus on the basics.
When Mr. Legere puts the same emphasis on these emerging and what the future of wireless is really going to be all about, then I’ll stop thinking of him as delusional. After all, what do I know? I’m just a simple, humble wireless industry editor.