.net Service and U World
It is known that it took more than a decade for 15% of Korea’s population to own mobile phones, but less than two years up to 50% since then. The time when 15% of people owned mobile phones is called tipping point. If then, what is a factor of the tipping point? Is it the expansion of net diffusion equipped with infrastructure or a price reduction of device? Either one is not the answer. The answer is a service. There is no doubt that the quality of services is important, but is attributable to a variety of supplementary services rather than the quality. Because it generates a lot of money. Naturally the net is being distributed more quickly and prices of devices are going down. Subsidies are given, and even mobile phones are handed out for free.
According to IDC, the number of internet terminals for setting up a ubiquitous environment worldwide reached five billion pcs as of the year 2006, but PC takes up more than half. But it is expected to reach over 15 billion pcs in 2012 that U world is in full bloom, while PC takes up less than 10%. Then when will the tipping point for the market of internet terminal start? What would be a factor of the tipping point? It is sure to be a supplementary service.
It is called a dotnet (.net) service, which is in contrast to a dotcom(.com) service offered by portal businessmen through PC.
Let’s define a net service provider as .net ISP (Internet Service Provider), which is in contract to a web portal. But, a portal and .net ISP are quite different business models. As for a portal, mostly a small number of market dominating enterprises such as NHN and Google, which have almost the same service form, monopolize a market, while .net ISP can come in many different forms in many application fields. It shows that a new niche market can be carved out with each differentiated service. The U world opens up, and this is the time when the tipping point starts. It will be the year 2010, in two years’ time.
Typical examples for .net service are IPTV, internet phone, location-based service (LBS), and remote medical service, and more. Furthermore, there are various supplementary services based on USN, U-city, and home network, etc. Let’s have a look at ‘Kids Care’, a location tracking service using an ID card based on RFID, which has been offered by three mobile communicators in collaboration with KT.
Where ever a child goes, e.g. kindergarten, piano institute and day care center, the internet terminals installed at such places read the card and automatically send a message to mother’s mobile phone in real time, i.e. “Mom, it’s Boram. I’m at the day care center”. The basic charge is 3,000 won per month. The business objectives of .net ISP are to get over 10,000 won per month from members by adding new supplementary services. It appears certain that at this time terminals will be installed at all institutes for free because more infrastructure will lead to more members.
Continuous addition of supplementary services should be guaranteed to the upgrade capability of functions of internet terminal. That’s because it takes a lot of time and costs in removing previously-installed infrastructure and rebuilding a new one. Such supplementary services should be uploaded in remote mode via the internet. The easiest way is to separately select a main process responsible for application and an internet processor responsible independently for the internet communication. It guarantees not only stability for remote uploading in additional functions, but also function upgrade and performance without touching a unique platform in the terminal previously installed.
Consequently, new supplementary services should continuously be added to .net service through various .net ISP so as to let U world be in full bloom.
Also, it should be easy for the internet terminal to upgrade additional functions through remote uploading. Just then, it will lead us to establish the infrastructure in a more stable and easier way for the world where communication service becomes more common anytime, anywhere, with any device.
Lee Woon-Bong, President of WIZnet email@example.com