Wednesday, January 16, 2013

joyn or go over the top? joyn's window of opportunity is closing fast, but operators still have a chance to get rich if they get it right.

GSMA's Rich Communications Suite "joyn" appears to have some momentum now. But is it enough to push the service over the top?

Take for example, Korean operators offer joyn to users >>

Joyn is looking to be the theory of everything for mobile services. It covers voice, messaging, video, chat, presence, location, phonebook, sync, file sharing, and more, is intended to work cross platform, and runs atop operators' IMS networks allowing for efficient use of existing investments.

But joyn is coming late to a crowded rich communications party. The market is filled with successful free and air-interface agnostic over-the-top services such as Skype, FaceTime, Facebook, Google Talk, WhatsApp, Kik, and Viber. And now W3C's WebRTC (Real Time Communication) API which enables a similar suite of rich communications directly within browsers is being supported by Mozilla, Google, Opera, among others. To be clear and fair, joyn, OTT services, and WebRTC are not necessarily mutually exclusive, and can in fact be complementary.

Mobile World Congress 2013 is next month and the joyn-branded Rich Communications Suite of services will be one of the key themes. We can expect to see GSMA touting its RCSe architecture by listing the growing number of operators across the globe who have at least some plans to support joyn.

At best, joyn will experience a bumpy ride. Historically operators have a mixed track record of rolling out their own content services (this is especially the case in an all IP-environment). Some services have been mega hits —SMS and ringtones come to mind here— others, such as operator content portals, have tended to have little lasting impact on consumers.

While joyn will enjoy some time in the spotlight at MWC 2013, attentive analysts and bloggers will be looking for the vacuums: joyn's success could suffer from significant interest gaps as a number of key operators have shown ambivalence or complete apathy towards the service. In addition, the lack of native platform support could create significant provisioning nightmares for operators. Solid handset integration will be one requirement for wide adoption.

Operators do have a real opportunity with joyn. The industry has been talking about embedding rich services deep into handsets for more than half a decade. But talk is cheap. Joyn will need wide adoption and flawless implementation including clear and fair pricing to squeeze it through the closing window of opportunity.

Suite. joyn for young...

...and old alike:

1 comment:

juan said...

There are alternatives as offering joyn also over the top for non-access customers, it is possible.
What we see today about joyn is limited to the basic person to person comms, but joyn is including network API (REST) to allow to create A2P, P2A, M2P cases and also make easy for 3rd parties to put joyn in non-mobile devices.
If you have time have a look to these demos:

I agree telcos are too conservative and most of them are following the follower tactics, but I can say that a lot of telcos issued RFI/RFP to be ready to launch once they consider joyn is getting some traction.